When most people think of communication, their minds go to dialogue, arguably the most prevalent form of communication, and when they think of dialogues and everyday conversation they think of the act of speaking. Yet I believe the ability to speak clearly or effectively verbalize your thought is not the most important tool in the process of communicating. I believe that listening is the key to keen communication. The simple quote “We have two ears and one mouth so we can listen twice as much as we speak,” said by greek philosopher Epictetus, has been recited to crowds or classrooms of children an immeasurable number of times, primarily with the purpose to hush them and direct their attention to a speaker. However it would benefit them if the implication that listening is more important than speaking was taught and understood. Applying effort to the act of listening, and training yourself to be observant and attentive, can greatly improve your daily communication, and hone your wit as an additional bonus.
As I plummeted toward shark infested water, made murky from human feces and trash, all I could muster was a cringe, brought on by the embarrassing destruction above.
Before I delve into my inner thoughts and newly formed philosophy, I’d like to clarify that this is not a refurbished version of the cliche idea that one must love themselves in order for others to love them as well. Sure this may have truth to it but even the most self-loathing individuals are loved by someone and the most self-conscious people admired. Loving yourself makes a great deal of things easier but there are no prerequisites for love.