I write this today, on Thanksgiving eve, 2016. I just want to remind everyone what this holiday is all about. No, not the Pilgrims and Indians and the historical aspect of this holiday, I’m talking about what it’s supposed to represent now, in 2016.
In a world full of so much hatred, and following the most controversial presidential election, probably ever; I personally think that this holiday is very important for families and togetherness. Use tomorrow as a chance to spend some good quality time with those you love. Indulge yourself with meaningful conversations. Create memories that will last you a lifetime, because you never know the last holiday that you will get to spend with those around you.
The world is changing around us at a rapid pace. Think about it. Just in my short life, I’ve experienced the evolution of the internet. It went from being super slow dial up, where you couldn’t use the phone, to being at our finger tips every waking second. Because of this the rest of the world is growing and expanding and….separating. The election has divided us more than ever, literally everyday on the news is talks about racism, Nazis, and hate. This is what the world is turning into. HATE HATE HATE. So we need to counter this and it starts with family.
I’ve been seeing this quote a lot lately “The problem with communication today is that most people don’t listen to understand, but listen to respond”
It hits me hard because I am as guilty as anyone.
When listening to people talk, my brain always goes straight to how it relates to ME, how it affects ME. But in reality, the person talking is trying to express stuff about THEM they want you to learn or understand about THEM, they are not telling you this for YOUR benefit but rather for THEIRS.
So when your sitting around the dinner table tomorrow, and your relative is telling you a story about work, or school, or whatever; listen to understand. There is a reason they are telling you that story, it made them feel some type of way, and it is your job to try and understand why it made them feel that way. Ask them simple questions like “how did that make you feel?” it may seem odd at first, but then that person will go deeper into that story and deeper into their feelings and in return you are building a closer relationship, you are earning their trust and making them feel like hey, this person actually cares about me.
That is something that everyone deserves to feel. Everyone needs to feel like they matter to somebody.
It can create a chain reaction.
It can change the hate.
Brad Meltzer (the worlds greatest author) always says that ordinary people change the world every day. It all starts with you, tomorrow on Thanksgiving day to change the hate.
Also take a moment tomorrow to understand that not everybody will be with their families this holiday. A big shout out to those men and women overseas fighting for our freedom. You are always appreciated.
And for those who lost loved ones this year and will be spending their first thanksgiving without them I know it will be tough for you, you are most certainly in my thoughts and prayers.
Try listening to understand as opposed to listening to reply, let me know how it works out for you, tell me examples, share your stories.