As I was thinking about my closet (1-6-10 blog post), I realized "not listening" is a rut that has developed in my life.
To accomplish everything I feel like I need to do in a day, I try to multitask when I listen. I try to have a conversation while I'm at the computer, while I'm doing dishes, while I'm grocery shopping, or while I'm doing one of ten other things. The truth is, I can't. If my brain is otherwise engaged, I can't actively listen the way I should.
So, my New Year's resolution is to give my full attention to the task of listening. I'll stop what I am doing and listen to the person who is requesting that I focus my attention on them. Isn't that what I am requesting when I speak to someone? Don't I want them to focus their attention on me while we are having a conversation?
So if you are speaking, I'll be listening. That will mean doing things differently.
There will be times I have to let the phone ring and call you back later. I may be in the middle of something that makes more sense to finish before I give you my full attention.
That may mean I have to end our conversation to tend to a child (or co-worker, or client) who needs my immediate attention.
But when you are talking, I will be listening and doing nothing else.