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DO YOU UNDERSTAND ME? Most of us can agree that we all want to be loved, respected, and valued. Those are pretty core to being human right? But one thing we often fail to recognize, is the importance and need for us to “be known” aka “being understood.” It has even been suggested that “being understood” might be more important than being loved. Psychologist Jeffrey Bernstein offered this insight on the topic: “I have met many divorced people who still love each other, but yet they never really understood each other.” I think that is extremely powerful to realize. We have thoughts in our heads flying around a mile a minute. We have ambitions, hopes, dreams, confusion, insecurities,’s hard to process it all. We want to be able to talk things out with others and be connected. After all, humans are social creatures. But when we express ourselves and we are met with resistance, especially from those we love, we can feel alone and isolated instead of connected. Feeling misunderstood by someone can lead us to become defensive and/or dismissive towards everyone. We build a little wall to protect ourselves and our feelings, and if we practice this long enough we don’t realize how big our wall has become. If we truly want to be understood, we need to do our best to understand others. Listen to their ideas and thoughts and beliefs, especially if they differ from yours. Approach people with a genuine curiosity, not a desire to change them. When you encounter someone that you don’t understand, this is amazing; It’s an opportunity for both of your lives to grow. When you approach a conversation with respect and curiosity and kindness, it will lead you to actually “see” someone. To actually UNDERSTAND them and their point of view. You do not need to agree with it will never happen that you agree with everything someone else does or thinks. That is okay. That is fine. That is life. Today I ask you a favor, Today I ask you to simply “be curious”. In all of your conversations today, instead of waiting for your turn to talk, instead of waiting to prove how smart you are, please just LISTEN and then be curious. Ask questions. Your goal today is: MAKE SOMEONE ELSE FEEL UNDERSTOOD. Just for today, see how it feels. See the type of response you get when you care more about understanding someone than changing them. When you learn to “see” them and their perspective instead of telling them who they should be. Drop your ego and your need to be right, and simply adopt an attitude towards understanding others. When we give understanding to others, we will receive understanding...and a world where we understand each other sure as hell sounds like a beautiful place to me. Have a great day everyone, don’t eat too much Halloween candy, but if you do...It’s okay, I understand...haha. Love you all. (11.2.17 -

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