More than anything else we remember how people made us feel. If they lift us up we remember them fondly and with pleasant thoughts. If they tear us down we remember them with feelings of disappointment, maybe even fear. It is usually their words we remember, the way they said it can haunt us forever. This is a great reminder to us all that words have more power than just a fleeting thought. We never truly understand the power of our words until someone quotes us back to us, then we get it.
Then there are the times when we see one thing and someone else sees something completely different. Like both of you look at something and see two completely different perspectives. We don’t know that unless we share our words with the other person. I’m always amazed to hear what other people see when we talk about places, ideas and the future. It is different ideas, persecution’s and words that light a fire in our out thoughts. It is listening and hearing the words they choose to describe, explain, or ignite an idea that help us broaden our own communication skills.
I was fortunate that as a child I grew up in a home that valued reading. My parents read to us and encouraged us to read. Reading, talking, listening, and learning how to express ourselves is a huge part of growing up. It gives the vehicle for ideas, questions and concepts to come to life. When people feel free to express themselves and are comfortable questioning, disagreeing and sharing an alternative way of seeing things THAT is when real personal growth occurs. We can see things with our eyes and have to build our own vocabulary for being able to express how we feel, think and react to what we see. It doesn’t mean everyone has to agree, it just means we have to be free to express ourselves.
It can take a long while to process a situation to the point where we can express what we are seeing and experiencing. These social distancing days have given us the gift of time. Time to think, time to process, time to express ourselves so other people can understand what we ‘see’. It may not feel like a gift, yet when we look back I think a great deal of clarity and focus will result from our time seeing and saying what went on these past months.