Stillness and Listening

Listening Preparing to speak at BlogWorld Expo with Jeremiah Owyang on the 9th, and part of my contribution is the slide deck. If you’ve seen my presentation style, it’s usually big images, brief text, and a lot of talking. Jeremiah is more of a detail guy. Read ANY of his posts, and you’ll see all the effort he puts into his work. I am deeply respectful of Jeremiah’s blog posts, and know why Forrester hired him.

So here I am.

Stillness

Airplane rides can be a chance to find stillness. It depends on your passenger neighbors, and what you choose to do, but they can be a chance to find stillness. And that’s where I found some of my thread for the presentation.

Stillness means NOT hurrying, not reading the web for a moment, not checking your email, and NOT thinking of what to say next.

There, friends, is the nugget. Not thinking of what to say next. Look inward a moment. Do YOU do that? Are you ready with a response all the time? Do you want to answer quickly so people will know you’re smart? Clever? Present?

Stillness Means Centering

Not focusing, mind you, but just stopping, taking a breath, and being aware of where you are, where you think you’re going, what you think matters to you, and how you’re doing with all that. That’s what I mean by centering. Looking out. Looking in. Looking around, and LISTENING to your heart and mind in equal measure.

Listening

Let me say what matters most in this post:

It is absolutely impossible to have a conversation without listening.

Try it some time. You can talk to people. You can talk at people. But you can’t have a conversation without listening, and further, hearing.

But I’d venture that you need inner stillness before you’re ready to listen.

Some Takeaways

In case this was too touchy feely, let me give you some things to consider:

  • By being still inside, you’ll better understand what matters to you, where you’re going next, and how you can be helpful.

  • By being still, you’ll be ready to listen to others.
  • By listening to others, you’ll have better conversations.
  • Conversations build relationships, business, friendship, and all kinds of other things that matter to you.

In short, you could do a lot for your business (or relationships or whatever matters to you), by thinking a bit today about stillness and listening.

What do you think?

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  • http://www.techsoap.net Brendan Cosgrove

    Great post Chris. Just in the last week a great wedding photographer, Dane Sanders,had a great post on stillness. Check it here: http://cutframetv.com/view_video.php?viewkey=594c7bc3c36e7e8ab955

  • http://www.personalbrandingmag.com Dan Schawbel

    This is a good point Chris. Talking and listening are the two fundamental elements to a conversation. Sometimes we may learn more by listening rather than talking.

  • http://www.techsoap.net Brendan Cosgrove

    Great post Chris. Just in the last week a great wedding photographer, Dane Sanders,had a great post on stillness. Check it here: http://cutframetv.com/view_video.php?viewkey=594c7bc3c36e7e8ab955

  • http://www.personalbrandingmag.com Dan Schawbel

    This is a good point Chris. Talking and listening are the two fundamental elements to a conversation. Sometimes we may learn more by listening rather than talking.

  • http://kchaynes.blogspot.com Kim Haynes

    Great post Chris and I really appreciate the reminder to be still and to listen and to do both more and more.

  • http://kchaynes.blogspot.com Kim Haynes

    Great post Chris and I really appreciate the reminder to be still and to listen and to do both more and more.

  • http://creativecurio.com/ LaurenMarie – Creative Curio

    I like being helpful. For some reason, I never connected being still inside myself and reflecting as a necessary part of that process. You are so right, though! Conversation and getting to know new people is very exciting to me. Now I will have to think about taking a moment to be still first. That is a hard thing to do in such a fast-paced world! Thanks for the reminder, Chris.

  • http://creativecurio.com/ LaurenMarie – Creative Curio

    I like being helpful. For some reason, I never connected being still inside myself and reflecting as a necessary part of that process. You are so right, though! Conversation and getting to know new people is very exciting to me. Now I will have to think about taking a moment to be still first. That is a hard thing to do in such a fast-paced world! Thanks for the reminder, Chris.

  • http://web-strategist.com/blog Jeremiah Owyang

    Man, I’m looking forward to talking with you. I know our styles will mesh well!

  • http://web-strategist.com/blog Jeremiah Owyang

    Man, I’m looking forward to talking with you. I know our styles will mesh well!

  • http://www.PistachioConsulting.com Laura Athavale Fitton

    This post made me think and also made me happy. Important stuff.

  • http://www.PistachioConsulting.com Laura Athavale Fitton

    This post made me think and also made me happy. Important stuff.

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  • tong

    i feel that listening is often neglected in the society.even schools thesedays focuses more on reading,writing and speaking more than listening when listening well is of equal importance.i think the schools should give equal emphasis on this aspect as well.your post have reminded me and made me think about the importance of listening in our lives.thank you chris brogan,this is a wonderful post.

  • tong

    i feel that listening is often neglected in the society.even schools thesedays focuses more on reading,writing and speaking more than listening when listening well is of equal importance.i think the schools should give equal emphasis on this aspect as well.your post have reminded me and made me think about the importance of listening in our lives.thank you chris brogan,this is a wonderful post.

  • http://www.selfhelpzone.com/category/self-improvement/ Self Help Zone

    Hello Chris,

    Great post…and listening always helps everyone…

    Well I would like to add some more info… :)

    We can improve our health with physical activity. Anytime we make a change in our physical activity level as in starting a new exercise program; it is a good idea to check with our physician first, particularly if we are over 60 years of age or have chronic illnesses.

    Taking a deep breath and get moving once we have the ok from our doctor. Whether our self improvement goal is to trim our waistline, or shed some pounds; increasing our activity level even just a little, get we started and we will continue to improve and to achieve higher levels of activity over time with a little bit of motivation and encouragement.

  • http://www.selfhelpzone.com/category/self-improvement/ Self Help Zone

    Hello Chris,

    Great post…and listening always helps everyone…

    Well I would like to add some more info… :)

    We can improve our health with physical activity. Anytime we make a change in our physical activity level as in starting a new exercise program; it is a good idea to check with our physician first, particularly if we are over 60 years of age or have chronic illnesses.

    Taking a deep breath and get moving once we have the ok from our doctor. Whether our self improvement goal is to trim our waistline, or shed some pounds; increasing our activity level even just a little, get we started and we will continue to improve and to achieve higher levels of activity over time with a little bit of motivation and encouragement.

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  • http://www.edhardyplus.co.uk/ ed hardy plus

    Everything will be all right,I am behind you.

  • http://savetubevideo.com youtube downloader

    Hello Chris,

    Great post…and listening always helps everyone…

  • http://savetubevideo.com youtube downloader

    Hello Chris,

    Great post…and listening always helps everyone…

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