Lightly child, lightly

portrait-back-woman

But most hearts say,
I want, I want, I want, I want.
My heart is more duplicitous,
though no twin as I once thought.
It says, I want, I don’t want, I want,
and then a pause.
It forces me to listen…

— Margaret Atwood, from Selected Poems II: 1976 – 1986 


Credits:

  • Image Source: Jenna McElroy (via Journal of a Nobody)
  • Quote Source: Paper Ghosts
  • Prior “Lightly child, lightly” Posts? Connect here.
  • Post Title & Inspiration: Aldous Huxley: “It’s dark because you are trying too hard. Lightly child, lightly. Learn to do everything lightly. Yes, feel lightly even though you’re feeling deeply. Just lightly let things happen and lightly cope with them.”

A ‘Good Morning’ you can actually feel vibrating in your chest

My favorite sound is the gentle rumble of an elephant greeting. It’s a very low “brrrmmmbrrrmmm.” A large component of that rumble is infrasonic — below the range of human hearing. It carries quite far. And if an elephant is close to you, you can actually feel it vibrating in your chest. It’s just the most relaxing, gentle and friendly sound.

Cynthia Moss, a wildlife researcher and conservationist who has spent more than 40 years living with and observing elephants in Kenya, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Tanzania and Botswana.


Notes:

  • Source: NY Times: Cynthia Moss
  • Note to Self: Some day, if we’re not careful, this sound and this incredible creature will be gone. And what a monumental loss to this planet it will be.

It focuses us on the thin line between what is there and what is not there.

standing-wheat-field-sun-rise

The silence is profound this morning. It is not portentous; there seems to be nothing in the waiting. It is a gentle silence, liquid and pastel, a shimmer on still waters. It is good to listen to the silence that surrounds each day. In the same way that music is made alive by the silence that surrounds the notes, a day comes alive by the silence that surrounds our actions. And the dawn is the time when silence reveals herself most clearly.

I once met a man who was raised on the Canadian prairies. We got to talking about the open space, and how it had shaped his spirit. “When the wind stops,” he said, “it is so loud that everyone pauses to listen.” The thought intrigued me. How could the end of a sound be loud? But when I traveled to those prairies, I began to understand. For the people in the great prairies, the sound they hear, the music that underlies their lives, is the constant and ever-present howl of the wind. To them it is no sound at all. When it is removed, the silence takes a different shape, and all are aware of it; all pause to hear.

We need to pay heed to the many silences in our lives. An empty room is alive with a different silence than a room where someone is hiding. The silence of a happy house echoes less darkly than the silence of a house of brooding anger. The silence of a winter morning is sharper than the silence of a summer dawn. The silence of a mountain pass is larger than the silence of a forest glen. These are not fantasies, they are subtle discriminations of the senses. Though all are the absence of sound, each silence has a character of its own. No meditation better clears the mind than to listen to the shape of the silence that surrounds us. It focuses us on the thin line between what is there and what is not there. It opens our heart to the unseen, and reminds us that the world is larger than the events that fill our days.

Into this morning’s silence comes the first call of a bird. I listen carefully. It cuts through the silence like a rainbow through the dawn.

~ Kent Nerburn, ‘The Eloquence of Silence’ from “Small Graces: The Quiet Gifts of Everyday Life


Photograph: Tina

This Holiday: Give Presence


Thank you Rachel

How do you make it lie down?

australian-lizard-blue-tongue

…I’ve never seen anything as strong or as stubborn,” he says.
And I think,
how do you tame a wild tongue,
train it to be quiet,
how do you bridle it and saddle it?
How do you make it lie down?

~ Gloria Anzaldua, “How to Tame a Wild Tongue“, From Borderlands/La Frontera: The New Mestiza


Credits: Photograph of Australian Blue Tongue Lizard: Tammy Puntti. Poem Source: The Chateau of My Heart

Pause. Then, ask yourself 3 questions:

funny-gif-need-said-question

funny-gif-need-said-question-ask-2

funny-gif-need-said-question-ask-think-3


Ouch. Hitting close to the bone here…


Source: themetapicture

Sounds Like Nature


And this post was inspired by this “List of Nice Sounds

nice-sounds


Gotta know when to hold ’em

cards, leadership, management

I’m on a conference call.
A long conference call.
The discussion is stretching and swirling in a loop.
I can feel my patience growing thin.

Is this normal brainstorming? 
Or part of the creative process?  
Or is this a complete mess?  
Or is my lack of sleep clouding my judgment? 

My mind drifts.
I call up one of my favorite management books: QBQ by John Miller.
John would suggest that I ask the Question Behind the Question?

Why am I amped up?  
What have I done to contribute to the rudderless direction of this call?  

I think about that for a moment.
Nah, can’t be me. Of course not.

I let the debate go on. I listen in silently hoping the solve is coming.

I turn to gnawing on a finger nail.
Aren’t you too old to be biting your finger nails? Disgusting habit. [Read more…]

Talking is like drinking a great Cabernet. Listening is like doing squats.

talking too much


  • “Take this simple test: After your next long conversation with someone, estimate what percentage of it you spent talking. Be honest. No, you’re already underestimating. How do I know? Because it’s more fun to talk than to listen. Add another 20% to your total. If you talked more than 70% of the time, you jabber too much.”
  • “An optimal conversation flow has each person talking about 50% of the time. This is the Ali-Frazier of good give-and-take.”
  • “But, you say, what if your talking partner is just quiet and loves to listen? Stop it. She doesn’t. Listening is like reading a corporate report. Talking is like eating a cinnamon bun.”
  • So how do you achieve this 50-50 conversational ideal? Easy: ask questions. But don’t think that one “How are you?” is going to turn you into Oprah. Actually listen to what the other person is saying, and find openings.”
  • “But if you’re talking about someone whom your conversation partner doesn’t know, especially a mother, keep it short—one minute tops, unless it’s a truly fantastic story.”
  • “I can hear you complaining already: “One minute? But I need to include all the details.” No you don’t…Your job is to quickly entertain and inform, and then to ask good questions…”
  • “Also, let your chattering breathe a little. One dastardly arrow in the big talker’s quiver is to slow down in the middle of his sentence, then to blow through the period so that there’s no opening for anyone to squeeze a word in.”
  • “Another essential rule is to monitor your audience. Is the guy you’re talking to glancing at his cellphone, spinning his Dorito like a paper football or making his tie into a noose? If so, pull the ripcord and ask him if Heineken is his favorite beer, since you’ve just seen him drain five of them. Watch how relieved he is to have a turn to talk!”

~ Rob Lazebnik, a writer on “The Simpson’s. See full article @ wsj.com: It’s True: You Talk Too Much


I have a few ‘acquaintances’ that could benefit from these tips. :)


Image Credit

Serve

Bird-feeding-dog-GIF

“We must be silent before we can listen. We must listen before we can learn. We must learn before we can prepare. We must prepare before we can serve. We must serve before we can lead.”

William Arthur Ward


Sources: Image – iraffiruse via clausleesemann. Quote: Yahoo Voices