WRITTEN BY CHARLES ODUGBESAN
I was sat down one evening in L.A watching cable in my hotel room and Pulp Fiction came on – one of my all time favourites. Whilst I was watching it there was a deleted scene in the movie shown that I never knew existed. It was the scene where Mia Wallace and Vincent Vega meet. Mia greets Vincent with a camcorder in hand and proceeds to ask him a set of trivial, ice-breaker type questions before they go out. But one question she asked stood out to me as the most thought provoking. She asked Vincent, ‘In conversation do you listen, or wait to talk?’
Think back to conversations, debates, even arguments that you’ve had and ask yourself that same question. Be honest! It made me think of what you can decipher from a person in situations where there is lack of proper communication and an inability to listen. Let me give you some examples.
I guess to effectively listen to someone or other people in conversation you have to be patient, willing to learn and genuinely interested in their opinions. Ever had a debate with friends and there’s that one person who’s thoughts don’t budge at all? No matter how convincing or logical your argument may be, it simply doesn’t seem as though you’re getting through to them at all. Yeaaah you can probably guess that that person was not willing to hear anything you had to say! People make the mistake sometimes of thinking that their opinion is correct when the subject at hand is simply a matter of OPINION. Don’t be closed minded. Let other thoughts flow! Except if we’re talking ‘Kendall or Kylie’. Kendall is 100x better and I’m not willing to hear anything you have to say about it!
Think about a relationship. The best way that the two of you can overcome situations and work things out together is by listening to each other. By doing that you both show that at all times you are able to take each other’s thoughts and feelings into consideration when you say something or make a decision. It’s part of the compromise of a relationship – you can’t just go around doing and saying whatever you feel like anymore once your loved up. You’ve got someone else to think about now! Without effective communication and the ability to listen to one another, you get cracks in the relationship. Tiffs, arguments, fights, fall outs…mess!
ON BOTH SIDES
Arguments are a classic case of both parties not listening and breakdowns in communication. You know those endless verbal wars where one person or maybe both refuse to admit they did wrong and see the other persons’ point of view? You just talk over each other and the fight goes round and round in circles almost to the point where you both forget what the argument is about. You don’t even know if the problem will be solved. What could be a simple problem that is fixed with constructive conversation gets blown up because someone takes such a stubborn stance and refuses to listen. Annoying right? If only both of you guys could communicate right and take each other into consideration.
Anyone who knows me personally is aware I can be stubborn, impatient and could probably guess that I do wait to talk in certain situations. I’m working on it! At the end of the day the more you listen, the more you learn right? You’d think that learning how to listen and how to communicate well is a basic life skill that everyone should possess. You’re right to think that. It is a skill everyone SHOULD possess. But not everyone can exhibit both of those traits perfectly. So work on it!
And finally, listen to Mia Wallace people. 23 years on her questions still hold relevance to this day. When someone talks listen up! Learn, be selfless and take other people into consideration.