The Communicatrix...Listens?

communication.jpg Like most of you, the communicatrix has an agenda. Don't know what yours are, but mine is to share certain hard-won truths. Well, really, a bunch of petty, not-so-hard-won truths, best thinking-man's hoochie site, kick-ass theater, worst phone ever, and one Big Fat Mama Truth, the Truth, if you will.

I have some tools in my communicatrix arsenal already, relentless enthusiasm, reasonable facility with language, considerable experience my message to others, but I'm still not really conversant. I still can't talk to anyone and have it land.

No, really, that's huge. That's everything, really. Imagine the possibilities: speak to a n y o n e...and have it land. I guess it would be easy if you had a really, really good weapon in your arsenal, like a burning bush or thunderbolts or some other groovy, god-like accessory, but I don't. I don't even have Vocal Amplitude. (Seriously. Tiny ribcage = no vocal amplitude.)

The secret for mere mortals, I think, is listening. Simple, right? Easy?

Really listening requires a detachment from ego I'm generally reluctant to muster. I don't think I'm alone, here, either, based on the number of conversations I've had where I actually catch overtalking happening in mid-sentence. Not the end-of-sentence, I-had-that-idea-too overtalking: full-on, hands-over-ears, I CAN'T HEAR YOU LALALALALALA!!! overtalking.

And this sometimes happens with really good friends who really care about me, not just garden-variety buggers in sales calls and ad agency pitch meetings (ad agencies are notorious hotbeds of overtalking, trust me).

I won't even get into the red vs. blue histrionics that have been flying fast & furious from both sides of late except to say that they're largely a catalyst for me getting off my bony ass and fixing my own nasty little listening problem.

My new-favorite pundit, Evelyn Rodriguez, who's all about the critical importance (and true power) of real communication, has written a couple of great posts recently about what happens when we stop listening and the magic that can happen when we start. She posits a really wise theory on the root of it all:

Being unheard, unappreciated and unlistened to is intimately linked with unwantedness. The isolation is overpowering. We can move away from the separation by remaining open-ended rather than closed meme-attractors ourselves.

Every relationship advice source worth its salt says that if you're looking for something in others, first find that thing in yourself. (Hell, even Dorothy figured out that if you're looking for happiness, check the backyard before you go running off on some poppy-induced, yellow-brick road to nowhere.)

More than anything in the world right now, I want to be heard. So I'm gonna start listening.

Anyone with me?

xxx c