There are many ways to respond to a person when you are having a dialogue. Some of the different responses I can think of are: active listening (with few interruptions and lots of nodding of the head), “that sucks” (and not really taking the conversation to the next step), “ah huh, ah huh” (a.k.a. speed it up; I don’t really have time for you), and me, me, me (a.k.a. I am going to take whatever you say and shift it to talk about myself). Of course there are more responses and my meaning of each one may not be yours, but at this hour, it was the best I can do. With all this said, it dawned on me last night that I appreciate when the person I am speaking to asks meaningful questions. These types of questions encourage reflection, and therefore opens the door for learning about one another and gaining wisdom in life. For example, everyone has been so excited for our pending baby arrival. When we engage in conversation, we always go over the same questions and answers. Rarely do they throw in a meaningful question… until last night! Daniel was asked the question, “What are you most excited about?” He had never been asked that question before, and he had to take a minute to think about it. His answer: “Looking at the baby and knowing we created this beautiful human being. Then when he or she is older, watching it learn.” I wasn’t part of this conversation, but he shared it with me because he was appreciative of this meaningful question because it encouraged him to reflect on this present experience we are going through. So often we are focused on the facts of life or and experience (ie. November 19th due date; no morning sickness, baby names, etc.) that the subjective side of it may be overlooked at times.
What are some meaningful questions people have asked you that took you a minute to respond?