Once upon a time there was a little girl living in a very noisy house. Growing up as a young girl was quite the screaming match most days. Her mom screamed at the dad and the dad reciprocated. She learned very early in life to STOP listening, develop a deaf ear some call ‘selective hearing’. When her mom started screaming at the little girl, she would hum silently so she didn’t have to hear the high pitch of her mother shouting. As she grew older and adapted to the loud voices in the house, she also grew a bit more defiant. The little girl would literally plug her ears and sing aloud. You can imagine the reaction that brought from her mother. She would bring out her famous fly swatter and the chase around the house would commence.
Sadly, for this little girl; the habit of being a ‘selective listener’ formed early and carried through over the years. In public school her report cards came home with the same comments quite frequently, “If she would only stop day dreaming, she would be a A + student”.
She managed to make it to 17 in that very loud and dysfunctional home and finished high school an average student. Now she was out in the real world where things were similar in some ways and in others very different.
Now a young woman, she moved to Quebec and lived with a family that would only speak French to her. The community was French speaking and so there was no choice but to listen and learn or she would not function well in the community.
So begins a new journey… She still has the ability to use ‘selective hearing’, but now understands the importance and value of paying attention and listening, not only to what others are saying or asking of you, but listening to the voice that speaks within each one of us. Yes, our bodies are incredible reporting systems that tell us how we are doing on a biochemical level. There is a reason we scream loudly when we stub our toe…so we pay attention to where and how we are walking so as not to create that kind of injury or pain again. Headaches are often a sign of dehydration and a way our bodies tell us to drink more water.
When we ignore the gentle whispers from our inner guidance council the voices become louder and louder, screaming at us to pay attention and unfortunately for this young woman, she had turned on her ‘selective hearing’. She chose to listen to the voices of others who were telling her all the wrong things and her body took over and shut down with heart failure.
Sometimes life hands us tough love that turns out to be the greatest lessons and we get to experience a growth, maturity, and knowledge of the power that resides within each one of us when we pay attention and listen.
Do not define your life by what others think it should be. We are born unique and although all connected in a magical way, individual beings with our own purpose. If we allow the negative expectations of other to define what we feel deep inside our being, we will surely find ourselves traveling down life’s road in the wrong direction. The good news is there are always exits along the highway where we can turn around and find our way back to where we are suppose to be.
Yes, I am that young woman and in reflection, I would say; I am grateful for all the noise in my home that taught me how to develop ‘selective hearing’. I am grateful for the life experiences that taught me what to turn off and what to listen to, which has gotten me through six decades almost in one piece, a little older, a few more dents, but over all a more enlightened, enriched soul able to hear the gentle voices before they turn into screams.
Now when I hear those inner critic voices or the exterior negative voices from others I say, “STOP, I choose to listen to that which serves my higher good and all the rest can go away!”