Listen. Listen hard …then act
‘Are you actually listening Mum – or just pretending?’
Oh dear. My children know the trick – ask a question – how was school? Then eyes glaze over, ears close off and my mind switches to a distracting work deadline.
Familiar? I can’t be the only one.
We all could do with a speed lesson in honing our listening skills. That’s a clear unexpected takeaway message from Being the Story 2018. For those of you don’t know the event, it’s the third from storytelling house, Sounddelivery which gives people with firsthand experience of today’s pressing social issues the opportunity and platform to describe their lives in their own words and offer solutions for positive action. These are stories that matter. Stories that spell out the reality of poverty, injustice, prejudice, homelessness, addiction, crime, mental health, loneliness – in order to drive change for the future.
This year’s event reinforced the onus not just on storytellers to relay their experiences, but for those of us hearing their voices to listen and act. To help them spread the word beyond an echo chamber, into the media, to policy makers and those in positions of power.