Monday, 2 April 2012

The art of listening.

I read a fascinating article last week.  Half way through this article, there was a quote that really stuck in my mind: 

“We have two ears and one mouth and we should use them proportionately…”

Having been thinking about it all week, an interesting discussion took place at my house on Friday night.  Running Man told me that he thinks I put men off by discussing my husband too much.  He questioned whether this is because I’m actually not ready to get involved with someone. 

I got what he was saying.  We’ve all been there haven’t we?  Or at the very least had a friend that does it – you know…. Endlessly talk about the ex-boyfriend / husband etc because they are still obsessed with, or devastated by them. 

To be perfectly honest, in my own situation, I think my readiness for a relationship and ‘getting over’ my ex-husband are separate things.  I have little doubt that until the day I no longer have to have regular contact with my ex-husband, he will continue to irritate me.  But this has nothing to do with my readiness to get involved with someone new. 

In fact, rather sadly, it was the brief affair with Tall Dark Handsome Guy last year that has really put me off kilter.  Unfortunately, he led me to believe that his feelings for me were sincere.  I believed that he was a decent man.  Sadly, I was wrong.  And the greatest damage that was done, was to my confidence in my own judgement.

Strangely, I can flirt for England with people I feel ‘safe’ with.  And by ‘safe’, I mean that I have no intention of letting anything develop.  But the moment I meet someone I feel seriously drawn to, I seize up like a clam.

Being aware of this problem of mine, I decided, when I met Tall Dark Handsome Guy, that I would try and be a bit more open.  And so I was.  And maybe that was part of the problem.

I don’t doubt that maybe, sometimes, I need to give me a bit more of a clue that I’m interested, but with TDHG, I think I went too far.  I may have revealed too much at an early stage.  Without being ‘secretive’, sometimes it is wise to hold things back and listen more.  And by listening more, we have the chance to pick up signals…

In all honesty, there were signals there.  I didn’t particularly want to listen to them, but they were there none the less. 

And so, the conversation with Running Man continued.  His view is that you shouldn’t alter your behaviour.  You have to be yourself, otherwise it’s tantamount to playing games and setting yourself up for a disaster.  I totally understood what he meant, but I don’t think that listening a bit more and saying a bit less, is playing games. 

In reality, it won’t take anyone long to know that I can talk the legs off a donkey.  That is, if they’re interested enough to get to know me.  And that’s the point – sometimes we need to let people have the time to get to know us.  Giving someone an information overload without ever getting to know our personality, could be very off-putting.  And by the same token, by listening to them we can look out for clues as to their personality. 

As it stands, I suspect that under ‘normal’ circumstances (ie – when I’m not trying to do what I did with TDHG) I might appear a little aloof.  I have always had a terrible fear of rejection, or having men interested for all the wrong reasons.  In simple terms, I work on the principle that if someone seriously likes me, they’ll make an effort.  And if their intentions are dishonourable, they will soon give up!

And so, going forward, I will take the advice to talk less and listen more.  I am sure it will stand me in good stead. 

1 comment:

  1. Hi Lala, talking about an ex! I did at the weekend. Simply because it occurred to me at the time that my day (chilled and plan less) with MissG wasn't one that I would of had with the ex. I've had a couple of dates in the past where they talked about their ex's and in some cases alarmed bells did ring in my head. I guess it's down to what you're saying about your ex and does it say more about you than them?
    I don't think you can alter your behavior racially but there's a degree of getting back to who you once were.
    I'm more willing to make mistakes now than when I was younger. Rejection isn't as frightening or off putting now than it was.

    Onwards and upwards :-)


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