On a Monday or Tuesday a couple weeks ago, I was having a conversation with a colleague or a student – I don’t quite remember. I began with the usual “Hello” and after answering “how are you?” I reciprocated with “how was your weekend?”
We then had a brief conversation about an athletic endeavor the individual took up over the weekend. The conversation moved to the task at hand.
A few days later I was driving home from work and I thought back to that conversation. I realized that I didn’t remember who the conversation was with, or half of what they said about the success (or failure) of their athletic endeavor.
Sometimes we get so dug into our routines, into accomplishing the tasks set before us, that we forget to pay attention to the stories of individuals. Even as a writer, as someone trying to take in the world and the stories around me, I sometimes forget to hear what people are saying.
Anyone involved with higher education – students, faculty, SA professionals and etc – is incredibly busy this time of year. Remember to slow down and listen. That’s the commitment I am making to myself and those around me.