Do you listen when someone speaks or do you only hear their words? Hearing and listening are two very different things. Hearing is being aware that sounds are being made. Whereas, listening is paying attention to what someone is saying. When you listen, you may find that there is much more being said than what you hear.
Inside each of us is a secret person. A person we hide from the world. Often times when we speak, we only allow people to hear what we want them to hear. However, beneath those words hides a different person. A person with fears, insecurities, sadness and anger. Have you ever revealed this secret person to anyone in your life? Does anyone truly know you?
I read the following statement once, “It really makes me wonder, the person next to you, are they really that person, acting like they are the best person, but instead they are blowing up people?” That is truth. So often, we have no idea who the real person is sitting right next to us, the person we see everyday or talk to on a regular basis. Sometimes even our own spouse does not truly know us. It is the secret you, the person behind the exterior.
A man lived next door to us for a couple of years. He usually kept to himself, but was always open to conversation when we spoke with him. He was a very nice man, who sadly committed suicide last January. We never would have imagined that he would do such a thing, but he did.
People may smile, joke around or seem content in life. But, what you see on the outside can sometimes be a very inaccurate portrayal of what is on the inside. We all want a friend that we can open up to. But, how many of us open up completely? I would dare say, not many.
There is always some part of you that stays hidden even from those who are closest to you. We are afraid that people will judge, criticize, or change their view of us. Sometimes we are simply afraid of the outcome, if these hidden parts of us were to be revealed.
I would also dare say, that everyone wants someone to know that secret person within. They long for someone to talk to, someone to understand, or someone to simply help lighten the load that they are carrying around with them. Issues of life can be extremely heavy when you are carrying them alone.
If you pay attention as someone speaks to you, they will likely offer you a glimpse of the person within. Most people, especially those carrying the most weight, will give subtle insights into themselves by the words they use and often times by the words they don’t.
However, how will we ever hear them if we don’t listen? Be a true friend to someone. Listen to them. Even the ‘strongest’ people need someone to talk to.