Pet peeves. They’re those small annoyances that seem to be particularly irritating to a person. Everybody has them. Mine include: people chewing with their mouths open, know-it-alls who flaunt their knowledge, non-emergency text messages at 4 in the morning…but my BIGGEST pet peeve EVER is when I’m trying to have a conversation with someone and they’re on their phone the entire time. Responding to a quick text message? Okay, I get that. But continuing to text or play your fake karate-ninja game in the middle of a conversation? Really? Since when did a piece of plastic become more fascinating than a living/breathing person?
Sure, cellphones and technology are a major part in our culture now days. But…that doesn’t mean chivalry has to suddenly go out the door, does it?
“Love one another with brotherly affection. Outdo one another in showing honor”~Romans 12:10
While we’re on the topic of manners, let’s look at some other displays of chivalry, that seem to becoming more and more of a rarity. (These go for both guys AND ladies)
*holding doors open for others
*offering to help carry someone’s books/groceries
*standing up for someone who’s being picked on
And, hey, what about listening? Ya know, really taking the time to hear someone’s heart and to care about what they’re saying. Listening, not only to what they say, but they’re body language and tone of voice when they say it (those two factors alone say more than a thousand words could) Even in the most seemingly pointless or small of conversations, I think we’d all be surprised at how much we can learn about a person–and at how great a difference we can make in their lives.
“Know this, my beloved brothers: let every person be quick to hear, slow to speak, slow to anger…” James 1:19
It’s important to know how to talk–like, in person– with others. Many of us, however, seem to leave something to be desired in the area of conversation. We’re good at answering questions and talking about ourselves, but not at asking questions and really trying to be interested in the other person. Truly fulfilling conversations require both people to both listen and talk. Of asking questions and being asked questions. Of being interested in the other person, and them being interested in you (and if they’re talking about something you couldn’t care less about, at least making an effort to be interested for their sake).
“Do to others as you would have them do to you.” ~Luke 6:31
Conversations are the building blocks to relationship. Even small talk has the potential to develop into something great! You just have to intentionally look and listen for it…and it might help if you put the phone down for a moment or two.
Who is one person you can intentionally listen to, both in their words and actions, today?
P.S. On day 6 of “Ditching the Mirror” challenge! Only one more full day to go! It’s been such an adventure–will update soon 🙂