January 23 – Getting at What Matters – Mark Nepo, The Book of Awakening

“If you want to be truly understood, you need to say everything three times, in three different ways. Once for each ear and once for the heart.”  Paula Underwood Spencer

For years I felt so unheard that when asked a question after speaking my heart, I’d take it as a rejection or criticism.  Often, though, it was just someone trying to understand.  What was called for was for me to circle the unsayable and try again.

I’ve learned that true dialogue requires both speaker and listener to try several times to get at what matters. For sometimes, the truth is uttered just as I have to cough. Or your heart opens and closes while I am struggling to land.

So much depends on timing, and so, I’ve learned not to repeat myself, but to play what matters like a timeless melody, again and again, if the one before me is honest and sincere.

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