Learning to Listen

A while back, Davida posted about how she is learning to walk. I always appreciate the honesty in personal posts such as these, and I usually learn something about myself too through reading them.

Writing and reading other blogs has turned out to be a lot more introspective than I could have imagined. I started writing hello, veggy! with the simple intent to share some of my favourite recipes, as well as an excuse to take more pictures and document my life as it unfurled. The personal growth that has stemmed from the blog was unexpected, but certainly not unwelcome. In the past few years, a lot of unplanned events and occurrences have shaped me into a person I never anticipated I would become, and I realize that this evolution is nowhere near complete. This has been particularly evident to me in the past month or so; with 4 months remaining as an undergraduate student, the universe is practically pushing me in a new and unknown direction.

Suzanne fall Davida then blew my mind with yet another amazingly insightful post on ditching the plan. After reading it multiple times and letting it sink in I realized that like Davida, my life is demanding some sort of change at the moment.

You know those ‘bad days’ that come around every once and a while? We all have them. They begin with getting up on the wrong side of the bed, progress to a stress-inducing situation at work or school, and cumulate with a disagreement between yourself and a friend. No amounts of tea or phone calls to Mom can fix it, and you’re left feeling dejected, and unable to be a productive human being. In the grand scheme of things, one day like this likely won’t matter all that much; it’s when they come around more often that makes you realize something’s gotta give.

I try to always keep hello, veggy! a positive and upbeat corner of the blog-o-sphere, but I would be lying to myself and to you if I said that every day is spot-on. Like I said before, I’ve experienced a lot of personal growth in the months I’ve been writing, but I feel like I’ve hit a wall recently. After a few days of thought, I determined that there is one aspect of my life I’ve been self-sabotaging more recently; I am a horrible listener.

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One of my favourite books covers this topic in great detail. This quote by Richard Carlson from Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff sums up my problem almost to-a-tee:

“Effective listening is more than simply avoiding the bad habit of interrupting others while they are speaking or finishing their sentences. It’s being content to listen to the entire thought of someone rather than waiting impatiently for your chance to respond.”

Not only am I not the best listener among my family and friends, but I also fail at listening to myself sometimes. With the end of my university career approaching with great speed, I am feeling the crunch in terms of getting everything that I need and want to do completed. Unfortunately, I often ignore my inner voice, and instead listen to another one that pushes me in an undesired direction.

I resolved to listen to myself more closely. On Wednesday, after listening to myself I knew waking up at the crack of dawn for spin class wasn’t what I needed that day. Instead, I slept in a bit, went to a juicy yoga class, and treated myself to a coffee and a walk in the beautiful fall weather. Even though spin has been a favourite part of my morning routine lately, it wasn’t what I wanted or needed that day. I hadn’t had a coffee in over a year, for fear of tummy troubles, but after listening to myself, I knew it was exactly the treat I needed.

Yin Yang Coffee Miraculously, I felt calm, cool and collected for the rest of the day just by listening a bit closer. There were moments I could hear myself getting caught up in necessary stresses, but I countered this by taking a breath and a moment to listen to what I truly needed. Yes, it was an extra effort to do so but I think it turned out for the better.

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Question of the Day: Do you take time to listen to yourself? How do you do it?

Thanks so much for reading! Leave me a comment, or follow me on, FacebookTwitter, Pinterest, and Instagram; I’d love to connect with you!

About Suzanne Poldon

runs on plants. eats out of mason jars. bends like a straw.

10. November 2013 by Suzanne Poldon
Categories: Mind, Personal | Tags: , , , , | 12 comments

Comments (12)

  1. Love this Suzanne! I’m glad you were able to listen to your body and just relax when you needed to – it’s absolutely necessary. I’m sure your body and your mind are thanking you!
    Sam @ Better With Sprinkles recently posted…Weekly Eats and Workouts 11/10.My Profile

  2. I loved reading this post! As ‘cliche’ as it may sound since moving to Vancouver I have listened to myself a whole lot part – I mostly attribute this to spending a lot more time in nature and by the ocean!
    Danielle @ Labelsarefortincans recently posted…Link LoveMy Profile

  3. Suzanne!!! I’m so honoured that my own journey has helped to inspire yours! It’s amazing how many people struggle with listening to themselves. We get stuck into this idea that we “should” do something just because we planned it when everything else around us is telling us not to. And ultimately we end up feeling like life is a constant push against the current. But it doesn’t have to be that way. Sure planning can be helpful, but you don’t need it for every second of your life. I have a hard time accepting that my own body (mind and heart) can truly be trusted, but I’m slowly learning that if I really pay attention, and listen hard it tells me exactly what I need to do. It’s a powerful thing to learn. Lots of love lady! xo
    Davida @ The Healthy Maven recently posted…{Five On Friday} Random Ramblings #2My Profile

  4. I’m getting much better at this, but it’s something that I’m only just grasping now after years of forcing myself and my body to do things it just didn’t want to! I’m so glad you are learning to be kind to yourself. It’s truly the most important thing we can learn how to do!
    Gabby @ the veggie nook recently posted…healthy vegan friday #68My Profile

  5. Nice post, Suzanne. At stressful times, it can be hard to trust anything but hopefully you can at least count on yourself.

  6. Pingback: Weekend Things and a Vegan Dining Outhello, veggy!

  7. Pingback: Intentions and Goals for 2014hello, veggy!

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