|(Print available to buy here)|
Today I went to the funeral of an old work colleague and neighbour. It's the third funeral I've been to in the last year and at every single one of them I learnt things I never knew about that person. It got me thinking about one of my 'areas of work for 2013' - To be present!
I love spending time with friends and family, enjoying the fun things we get up to, but how often do I really listen to what they are saying? I like to think I'm a good listener, but it's easy to think about what the next question is you're going to ask and not really listen to what it is that they are telling you. Sometimes it's also about asking the right questions, meaningful questions, not just 'stock' questions which we've all been programmed to ask through social norm. In 2013 I'm really going to be present, listen properly, ask questions and spend time finding out more about my friends and family.
I also think it shouldn't stop with those nearest and dearest to you. Since the advent of smartphones and tablets it seems many of us live in our own little social media bubble. I ride the bus to work sometimes and you see everyone with their heads buried in their phones. I've never been one for engaging in conversations with strangers, it's always made me feel a little awkward, I don't know why. In 2013 I'm going to make an effort to respond to those who engage with me, they are clearly doing so for a reason, and therefore I should listen, and be present. Even though you don't know the person doesn't mean they have nothing to offer, even the briefest of chats can have meaning.
Here's to being present in 2013, and beyond! xx