advice is free, talk is cheap, listening is expensive

A lot of people give advice, most of which is unsolicited and unhelpful. Suppose then that when one does seek it, very few folks listen. Truly listen. It takes someone special to do more than merely hear. When we sit down and focus intently and astutely on someone—without judging them, without projecting onto them—something meaningful can be created in the space of a conversation.

I tend to forget that. Sometimes I ramble or tune out. Sometimes I don’t respect their story or time. But there is a difference between talk and dialogue.

We should perhaps gravitate towards the latter rather than the former. Time is a form of currency. Something infinitely more valuable than money. Making time for dialogue is important. Instead of haphazardly spending our time, we consider investing it in more listening, more dialogue. It takes more energy and nuance to make discernment when choosing between having a talk or having a dialogue. That means selecting or rejecting conversation. That means being actively engaged. That means being more mindful.

The dividends are worth it.


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