There are times when others tell us something about ourselves or about life in general or maybe about their own personal experiences that could prove invaluable to us in our self-development journey. But often we tend to ignore the message because our egos raise it's ugly head and we take offense at what is being said or we look at it as well that person lived a traumatic life so his/her message has nothing to do with me. We may be right. That person's traumatic life did not happen to us, but who better to talk about how emotional issues can affect our lives? Unfortunately we live in a society that influences our minds to think that a person who was abused is not all together there in their minds. How sad that people have that mentality. Matter-of-fact, someone who has gone through major difficulties in their lives is the one that have the best opportunity to grow and have a deeper understanding of themselves. Wouldn't it be foolish if we disregarded these individuals as nutcases rather than learn from their experiences? We may not have had a traumatic life as the person did, but didn't it take courage and strength for that person to speak about his or her life? Also, this person has overcome major self-esteem issues, lack of confidence and self-worth and they have risen from the ashes to triumph forward. We all need courage and strength to face the realities of life. Do we have it or could we cultivate more of it inside of us? Someone once said, "Ignore the messenger, but take the message". We can all learn something from each other, but if our egos are stuck on the exact experience of another we will fail to see the lessons behind their experience.

By cultivating listening skills to not only hear what is being said, but also to understand the eexperiences behind it will help us to tap into our issues. We need to ask ourselves, is my life working for me? Am I happy with where my life is heading? The ultimate goal is to have a life that works for us. One that we are not making sacrifices, but is living an authentic life that makes us a hundred percent happy. Sometimes others will say things to us maybe about our behaviours and we take offense. Our ego's rise up and we get angry or we cut that person off thinking how dare they say something to us when their lives are not even perfect. While the other individual may not have a perfect life it would be foolish to ignore what they say because of our egos. What if they are right and some of our behavioural traits are less than exemplary? By ignoring the individual due to their background would prove detrimental for us. We have just missed an opportunity to grow within ourselves. There is a saying that says, "Do not cut off your nose to spite your face". As mere humans with egos, fears and insecurities, we have a tendency to cut people off or cut them out of our lives because they may say something we don't like or we feel that they are stressing us out. However that only comes about when we are resisting the opportunity to grow. Once we consciously allow ourselves to grow and use those around us as the means by which we look deeper within, we are able to handle those individuals in our lives. Sometimes we need to step back, listen and analyze ourselves in the situation to see what we are being taught before moving forward. So, instead of being quick to cut people off, it would serve us to look to see what the lesson here is for us. To obtain a deeper understanding, we need to ask ourselves, "What am I being taught, but I'm missing because I'm resisting it? Remember that what we resist persists. So if we resist the lessons that are being presented to us, the lessons will get harder and harder until we stop resisting and open ourselves to receiving the lessons. Hopefully, we don't wait too long to learn the lessons that are being presented to us.

None of us are perfect so there will never be a perfect home. That does not mean that our families were bad, but if we look closely we will see the dysfunction that exists within our families. The family that is being referred to includes our parents and our siblings. Our parents are our first caretakers and it is from them we receive our conditioning and programming. Our parents did not always have the necessary emotional tools that were needed to guide us along and as a result we grew up dysfunctional. It is no longer enough to say we will not live the life of our parents but then we do nothing to create our own individual life-path. Living a life opposite from our parents is not really living an opposite life. The truth is we want a different life from that which we grew up in and from the one our parent's grew up in. Maybe it's time we examine ourselves and see what areas of our life need to be worked on. It is not conceivable to work on all area at once, but if we start on one area at a time, it is amazing to see the changes that will automatically take place in other areas of our life.

Due to the conditioning that we have all received from birth through society by way of our parents we are all left with emotional issues that need to be worked on. Whether we are from a traumatic background or not there are things within us that still need to be work on. None of us are immune to the cultural, societal, religious conditioning that we receive. It is during our childhood that we absorb these messages like a sponge and we carry them over into our adult lives. Many have traveled the road before us and they have learnt various lessons. Learn to listen to others. We may not take everything they say, but it would do us well to "eat the chicken and leave the bones". Take what we need and leave the rest. Now this is not referring to using people. Instead, not everyone will be able to offer us all the life lessons that we need. While there are things that we will learn from others, some of what we need will come in the form of our life experiences and the rest will come from our own intuition. However, if our intuition is not finely tuned we can miss the lessons being offered through others and through our experiences. This may sound like a contradiction, however it's not. It is important that we trust ourselves and how we feel so that when we are listening to others we know what to take away from the conversation. If at any time during the conversation we feel ourselves resisting what is being said, then that is an opportunity for us to look deeper within ourselves and analyze why the conversation bothered us that much. Is it our insecurities rising to the surface? Is it some past hurt that we never dealt with? Are we having issues with our family that we have ignored because we don't want to think negatively about our families? These are some of the questions that we can ask ourselves whenever we feel that someone has offended us or their conversation has made us feel uncomfortable. Something can be true, but not necessarily true for us as an individual. We should not accept things blindly just because our mentor said so or because we read it in a highly acclaimed book written by an also highly acclaimed author. What is true for one person may not be true and necessary for another. Also repeating what someone else said does not make it our truth. That would simply be regurgitating what we heard.

Here are some of the key points of listening:

1. Hear what is being said.
2. Feel how what is being said affects you.
3. Analyze why you feel that way
4. Understand why you feel that way
5. Ask yourself, do I want to feel or be that way?
6. Be quiet and allow your feelings to come to the surface
7. Allow yourself to consciously grow and expand in spiritual consciousness.

It is often said that we are not our brother's keeper. Nothing is more further from the truth. We are not on this planet alone. We are all co-dwellers and co-creators on this planet and we all have a responsibility to help ourselves as well as others and we do this by listening and learning from each other.


Author's Bio: 

About The Author:

Trudy-Ann Ewan is a Spiritual Life Design Coach, Motivational Speaker, Author who is passionate about helping individuals create their passionate life. She motivates and educates individuals on how to fall in love with themselves and create a balanced and (w)holistic life by developing a better relationship with themselves without judgment. Sign up for the free Create Your Passion Newsletter at: and where you can also join her coaching program. You can join her on Facebook:

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