My family has had to repeat a lot of things lately. They mumble something, I say, "Huh?" and then they say it all over again. Sometimes, I wonder if they do this on purpose, just to get my goat! My kids are teasing me about going deaf. I guess that's what I get for listening to rock and roll music full blast in my headphones as a teenager. It's payback time for me. (and a warning for the MP3 generation)
I'm not totally deaf, mind you. I can still hear whispered plottings behind my back. It was that way with my dad too. He didn't hear what I wanted him to hear, but sure he heard everything I didn't want him to hear!
All this fuss about my hearing, lately, has reminded me how important it is to listen. There are a lot of folks in this world who have a very fine set of ears -- and yet they don't listen! They're too busy talking: mouths wide open and ears closed shut!
I'd much rather be hard of hearing than hard of listening!
In case you're wondering, here are a few indicators that you just might be "Hard of Listening."
1. If you smile and nod, say "uh-huh", and have no idea what the other person just said.
2. If you are busy thinking of what you're going to say next when the other person is talking.
3. If you're picking apart the other person's words, so you can use them as ammunition to win an argument.
4. If you jump to conclusions about what the other person is saying before he/she says it.
5. If you finish the other person's sentences.
6. If you say what you have to say, and then leave without pausing for the response. (One fellow said, "My wife and I had words this morning. She said all of hers, but I didn't get a chance to say any of mine!" Of course, maybe he was better off for it in the long run.)
7. If you are unwilling to consider another perspective besides your own.
8. If you think there are only two sides to the argument: Your side, and the wrong side.
9. If you impute evil motives behind the other persons words and actions. "I know what you MEANT by that" (It's usually best to assume they meant well.)
10. If you always have to say the last word. And, as Forrest Gump stated "That's all I have to say about that!"