Tuesday, September 09, 2008

Will I become too distracted to Listen

Perhaps the pace of society goes by so fast, we sublimely loose some of the most valuable things around our lives. One of which I notice is that we rarely give or recieve the gift of truly listening. Yet, if we claim that 'time is the new currency' then does that mean that both time and money are precious in our sight? I think its not about the money, but rather about the time commitment required.

I recieved a call recently from an ex-student's mother. Over the phone she cried bitterly on how she failed as a mother. She struggled as a divorcee to do her best at work so that she could provide the material needs for her son. Her struggle led me to recall another online conversation with a dear friend in UK. I quote: "Yes, communication in families and now across the world (facilitated by the Internet) should underpin the change that is coming. Market forces alone will not fix things and adequately respond to those societal ills to be found across the globe." (http://thinkx.ning.com/profile/JohnYeo#chatter-2083458:Comment:5233)

As I heard my inner voice fearing a future where I myself may blindly become estranged to my children, I stopped to reflect what are the interventions I can proactively take to prevent that from happening today. The birth of 'Structured Fun Learning' (see entry of 28 Aug in http://joanna3117.blogspot.com/) with Joshua was in my opinion successful with him looking forward to the time we spend together each evening.

This came about I started asking myself from the pespective of a repentent father who had been uninvolved in my children's growth. The questions I postulated led to deeper thoughts..

  • How has the gap between me and my family widened?

  • What went on in their lives and who are those they choose to confide to?

  • HOw often do I spend one-on-one time together?

  • What were some of the best conversations I've had with them?

  • Did I help them to understand the critical issues/dilemmas of thier lives?

  • What will I say 10 years later when we step out of the house in the morning?

  • What are some of the best conversations I've had with them?

  • What did I learn about them from the small talks and did I "hear" the deeper issues that could have been on his/her mind?

  • What was unique about that time together?

  • Why was it easy for me to talk?

  • How can I create an atmosphere appropriate for parent-child bonding?

  • How can I proactively plan for interaction time together?

  • How can I be more responsible and how do I push for accountability?

I am glad I pondered upon the above questions. The rules, though seemingly simple, are fundamental in shaping work-life balance. The harsh reality of survival, tends to tip this balance to a side that may bring about irreversible consequence. May the wisdom of the Holy Spirit lead us husbands and/parents into daily knowledge of the importance to just stop and listen.

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