How Do We Say What We Are Saying - Without Using Words?

Strolling in an open-air arts-market on the Seine, I stopped in front of a stall with paintings that captured my imagination.  I stood, quietly, alone, just me, in silence, when I heard the voice of the painter, whom I hadn’t noticed sitting on a chair, saying to me: “I am not a dreamer.”

I was surprised and curious about what she said.  I was even more curious about what made her say that?  What in my silent gesture made her think that I perceived her a dreamer?

This little interaction, took me spinning in explorations of perceptions about perceptions about perceptions.

I could not tell you why she said that to me, because even though we spoke for a few minutes, my French is limited and so was her English.  I tried to get to the essence of it, and am not satisfied that I did.  So, I let the need to know what made her say to me, “I am not a dreamer” go.

Instead, I am living in the question, “How are we saying what we are saying, when we are not using words?”

Without Effective Listening - Listening Loses Effect

The way that I see this, is that through talking we carve the direction.  And, through listening we create the space from which understanding occurs.

Hence, when I think of leadership it occurs to me  that effective leadership is the manifestation of ‘direction with understanding.’ 

Making space for listening is what allows the inner dimensions of listening to arise. Working from the insight that the only thing that liberates and encourages people’s capacity to listen is the experience of being listened to and being heard themselves, as well as having the intention and the care to understand the other.