In the fitness industry, there is always so much focus on which muscles to exercise and how to exercise them. Today, I want to talk about a group of muscles that get neglected when it comes to focus on exercising them: the ear muscles. Yep, I am exploring why we all should listen more, talk less.
I came across a quote recently that supported the listen more, talk less idea very powerfully. It stated, “you have two ears and one mouth. Use them in this ratio: listen more, talk less.” It went on to further note that your mouth has the ability to close, while your ears do not. God created us to be creatures who listen.
In fact, listen more, talk less is an idea that is supported in scripture as well. Think about James 1:19: “My dear brothers and sisters, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry.” Another example of listen more, talk less scripture comes from Ecclesiastes 9:17 – “The words of the wise heard in quietness are better than the shouting of a ruler among fools.” There is also the Bible verse Proverbs 10:19, which reads, “When words are many, sin is not absent, but he who holds his tongue is wise.”
When we listen more, talk less, we are creating stepping stones to greater understanding. We remove the focus of the conversation from ourselves. We cease to simply think about what our next reply is going to be, and instead focus on the individual we are conversing with, really aiming to get in their shoes and comprehend their point of view. We also diminish our opportunity to sin by gossiping and talking about other people, as can sometimes happen when we run our mouth without paying much attention to what we are actually doing.
I think this idea of listen more, talk less comes at a great time. After all, tomorrow is Thanksgiving. As we attend gatherings with family and friends, we may be interacting with people we have not seen in a while. The temptation could be to fill them in all about our lives and what has been going on in our worlds. But what would it look like to attempt to follow the two ears, one mouth ratio and listen more, talk less? Who is with me to give it a try?