Mindful mindfulness when communicating requires absolute focus on the person speaking. This may seem like an obvious fact, but remaining mindful when communicating can be a tall order.
One synonym for mindfulness is attentiveness, which is what it takes to experience true communication. Regardless, often our attention is only partially on the person speaking. This happens for a number of reasons, including noises or other distractions, thinking of things we have to do, or wondering when the person will be done speaking. However, I find the biggest reason I don’t give my full attention to the speaker is because I am considering what I am going to say next, whether that is to add to what they’ve said, rebut it, or relate a similar experience.
My mind is seldom silent, so it takes considerable effort to keep it quiet, but the benefits of mindfulness in communication are worth the strain. They include reduced misunderstandings, richer and more meaningful conversations, not missing important parts of a conversation, and a deeper connection with the speaker. Ironically, just the thought to be mindful takes away from absolute focus on the person speaking but as soon as I note I’m having the thought, I can snap back to mindful mindfulness.
This post is part of a series on Mindful Mindfulness. The prior entries are:
- Mindful Mindfulness, which describes mindful mindfulness along with its benefits
- Mindful Mindfulness: Exercise, which describes specifics and benefits of being mindful during exercise