How to Discover What Goes on in Other People’s Heads

How to Discover What Goes on in Other People’s Heads

I am so glad I stumbled upon this speech. It’s not even about couples at all, but I understand the difficulty in summing this speech up in a title. I would have called it: “How to Discover What Goes on in Other People’s Heads” or “Transforming the World or Work”. When asked what his purpose in life is Zeldin says: “to discover what is that I can give the world that it doesn’t have already. And in order to discover the world, I need to talk to as many people as possible.”

The talk is about the importance of REAL conversation. His current mission is transforming the world of work as we move toward a future where menial jobs are taken over by automation, and how the work we do to earn a living can be reinvented to suit HUMANS rather than to suit industrial purposes.

Listening to Zeldin’s speech, I regained some lost clarity about why I might exist.

Of the many things mentioned, he speaks about the struggle of finding meaning in what others have to say. I’m glad he said that, and also envious because I think his observation was more well received coming from him than it would be had I said it.

My Own Personal Conversational Downfall

Here is a man who could probably understand my interrupting as a way of doing a conversation!

I know I am a chronic interrupter, but I do my best to remain vigilant in my awareness of this, and give other’s the floor, and listen. But the the thing is, I don’t interrupt because I think what I have to say is more important than what you have to say. I interrupt you to show my agreement with you and to affirm my understanding.

(Aside) I had never heard this until just now:  Wild Being from Birth, Lou Reed How wonderful!-*see how I interrupted myself there!

I’m sorry I don’t always seem to acknowledge what you are saying in the moment; that I instead breathlessly interrupt with something of my own experience of the thing you mentioned. I do this because I actually don’t want you to stop sharing, but I want you to go deeper.  When I interrupt, I’m wanting to show my interest and avoid appearing aloof. Otherwise, I fear we might be stuck on the surface of a conversation forever. If I am to actually listen to another, then the surface is a place I cannot bear to be.   The problem is, that my view of what is related is broader than most.

Maybe I just have a hard time keeping my mouth shut.

However, I have also experimented with silence on some occasions where I thought that perhaps I should let another speak. More often than not, when I do this consciously (there really is not other way I can do it) what happens is that I am met with silence as the other(s) looks at me expectantly. So, I feel pressure to speak.

I have gotten better at allowing space and allowing silence in these moments, but just because I can allow silence doesn’t mean that is necessary to do so.

At the same time, I often avoid calling people for the precise reason that I don’t feel I have anything to say. I always feel like I should say something worthy, or have something entertaining to share if I am to call someone. So, I don’t call unless there is news. I assume that if someone  had something they wanted to tell me, they would call to tell me. Of course, I would probably interrupt them.


How to Discover What Goes on in Your Own Head

On a RELATED note: I wrote up something similar to the list of questions that this gentleman has created to help people engage with one another. My list differs in that it’s intended purpose is to offer prompts to have a conversation with yourself, but it could also be applied to a conversation with another, if you so desire.

I created this a couple years ago, but I’ve been keeping my Magical Question List to myself, either because I didn’t feel it was valuable or worthy, or because I am embarrassed that it is. But today I am going to share.

These are questions to ask yourself when you feel lost as to what you should do, when you need to make a decision. These are questions to find out what is going on in your own head. It is intended to clarify a current situation, but it may actually muck it up first, so take heed. Ok here goes:

What’s bothering you?

What do you think the solution to the problem is?

What do you need?

What’s one thing you could have that would make this decision easier?

What do you feel like you are neglecting?

What do you FEEL the solution to the problem is?

How would your life be better once this issue is resolved? Share the  details of that vision.

Finish this sentence: With regard to this particular decision, the thing I am most afraid of is..

What are you procrastinating about?

What do you feel is holding you back?

What is one thing that you could get rid of that would make your life better?

What is one thing you could get rid of that would make coming to a decision easier?

If you could have one tool at your disposal, what would it be and how would you employ it to resolve your current issue?


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