Today marks one year since I joined CrossFit Reverence in Rogers, AR. In that time, I've had countless conversations with numerous incredible people. The reminiscing, joking, encouraging, and bantering is daily therapy for me every time I walk through those doors. However, some of the conversations I value most are the one's with the owner, Amy.
Amy is a professional listener. Literally. Before owning a CrossFit gym she was a licensed professional counselor and even though she's no longer paid for it, she remains a great listener. If you were to record the conversations Amy has with others and count the words she says versus other people, she might make up 25% or less of the word count.
Last week was my first day back after the Holiday Break. Amy greeted me and asked me how Christmas went. Before I knew it, I'd spent a few minutes catching her up, venting a little bit, telling her how glad I was to be back. When I'd finished, she continued coaching class and I walked away to grab a barbell.
Here's the thing... Amy wasn't the first person to ask me how my break was that day at the gym, but she was really the only person who asked and then truly listened to my answer. As I walked away from Amy I felt lighter, fulfilled, cared for, and all she did was ask me a question.
If you're looking to care for others this year, consider the gift of listening. Oftentimes, people don't need to be given words of encouragement. Rather, they need an opportunity to say something to someone who truly wants to listen.
Next time you're in a conversation, listen for how what the other person is saying can be valuable to you. Then, tell them how what they said is valuable.
How can you change the question, "How is it going" to something more meaningful that you intend to truly listen to?
"Most people do not listen with the intent to understand; they listen with the intent to reply." - Stephen R. Covey