By Mr. Ashley Morris
My particular line of work requires one to hone two key requirements that are central to this job: the capability to talk, and an ability to listen. These abilities require specific skill sets that can only be acquired with the wisdom which accompanies time and experience.
Just as our parents teach us specific words and phrases, they must also show us vocal inflections, tones, and harmonies. All these are necessary to be learned in order to master the arts of speaking and listening.
For example: we hear a lot of things every day, but we choose to listen to particular items based on their level of importance to us. Depending on the circumstance, this could be either extremely helpful or very detrimental to our survival and sanity!
Mastering these abilities only takes place when we experience life through engaging others in conversation, these abilities sharpened only by actively participating in both.
You become a better listener through conversing with individuals. The greater that you listen to others talk, the more your own skills of speaking are enhanced.
What does any of this have to do with writing or my line of work?
The ability to talk, ones capability to listen, the fine skill of writing, and even my occupation are all encompassed in one word: storytelling. Each of us has a story to tell that is worth listening to and worthy to share with others.
Regardless of how frivolous or mediocre we believe these stories to be, they are the first and most important way we connect with one another.
It is how we share our fears, anxieties, hopes and dreams. It is how we express sorrow, joy, frustration, bewilderment, excitement and expectation. It is the element that unites us under a common goal and directs our energy in a positive direction if harnessed properly.
Our stories have the unique ability to transcend everything that makes us different in order to remind us of all these things which bring us together. The moment we grasp firmly to those things that connect us, is the very same instant we reach a level of wisdom, which brings us much more closely to what we each hold sacred and true in this world.
This is what we achieve when we write.
We talk; we share our experiences, tears of triumph and survival. We share our laughs of ecstasy or cries of deep desperation. All are descriptively rendered through the words, we express in our writings.
We listen; we hear our own voices, those whispers of the silent majority. The clamoring of the vocal minority members, the many unspoken thoughts of those who cannot speak freely without fear of persecution or alienation, is contained in our carefully constructed narratives.
Through this intricate yet figurative dance, an exchange of thoughts through our active participation in listening and talking, we are and forever will be, connected to one another in the past, present, and future.
So I encourage all to be intentional yet deliberate in sharing your experiences. Whether it be verbally, through the mediums of a pen and paper, or using a keyboard and monitor. Your stories are unique and necessary for the survival of millions of people who long to laugh, cry, and bond with others, who they not only identify with, but desire to call “friend.”
It is my hope that through this short peroration, my friends, you’ve been inspired to write your own story with hearts, minds, and ears open. Being prepared yourself, to be receptive as well, to these wonderful and insightful messages, which will be sure to follow from those, that are inspired by your words.