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Changing to Grow

Rachel Saylor

Have you ever set out to accomplish something new and let others know about your plan that you were so amped about? What have their responses been? Sometimes, you get really positive feedback and excitement from the person and they encourage you. Many times putting their own selves down about how there is no way they could accomplish that or they don't have that kind of dedication. I wonder if this is an american thing; complementing by putting yourself down.

Other times you don't get much of a response at all and the person starts talking about something completely different when what you really wanted to do was have a good chat about this new endeavor of yours. Most of the time, I have realized people who respond in this fashion are just no good for me. There is no need to keep people around in your life who will not even listen to what you have to say, what you are passionate about and how you are changing to grow. If you find that this form of communication is the norm between you and someone, where your thoughts are thrown off and replaced by that person’s own, then just do yourself a favor and run. It will save a lot of time and heartache.

Yet, there are still other times when the person has some critical things to say to you or what I've run into so much, when they tell me what I should do. This is how their sentence begins, "You know what you should do? ...". At this point I have normally tuned them out. What I am realizing though is that although most of the time I don't care to hear what suggestion that person has to make for my dream since they are not normally taking into account who I am, how I work or what I want, there can be some interesting information or ideas that can come from what I don't want to hear.

In order to really hear these ideas and try to grab something useful from them, I have to let go of my pride and let myself open up a bit more. That is not to say that I should throw out all of my values, but that I should just try to listen. I believe that you should always voice your opinion (something I'm working hard on) and be true to yourself, but you should also be willing to grow and change. Change comes with growth. Growth comes with change. They just go hand-in-hand, and I don't want to stop changing and growing.

So as hard as it sounds (and god is it a struggle for me), listen to what people have to suggest. You won't always take the suggestion, but let yourself become more open. Become a better listener. Don't just start judging their words right off the bat. Let it sink in, look at it from their perspective, take what you can and grow.