These are just two little words.
They’re innocuous on their own.
But used together and used too often, they become two of the most disempowering words in our language.
Like when your friend tells you a story and you say, “Yeah, I know, that happened to me blah blah blah,” and suddenly you are no longer listening.
Or when your business partner tells you about a problem and you say, “I know, so and so always does that,” and suddenly you are making them irrelevant.
How about when your child tries to talk to you about something important to them, and your instant reply is “Listen to me. I know better than you.” Bang. You have just shut your child down and slammed the door. What kind of life lesson is that?
No wonder people have problems communicating. Nobody is listening.
Learning is never accomplished when we are talking. Learning happens when we are listening. Compassion happens when we are listening. Gratitude happens when we are listening. Breakthroughs happen when we are listening.
So listen up. Instead of jumping right into “I know,” try saying “I’m listening.” And then actually listen.
This all smacks of Fraiser Crane, but he was onto something.
These are just two little words. But they are two way better words. And using them changes everything: