A Curious Outpost

The Art of Listening

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I heard a quote the other day: “Store your grain in the belly of your neighbor.””  …Is your neighbor hungry for grain?  Are they hungry at all?  I know it’s just a figure of speech, but think about it.

A couple days ago, a reader named Marion commented on a video.  She said, “Creativity is like a ship, you can use it as a way to transport you places, but it decides, manipulated by our subconscious but also by nature, by side elements out of our control, by external vibes, where it actually takes you.”

When Marion left the comment, she was talking about the journeys she didn’t know she could take within the confines of her own reality.

Now more than ever, from outside ourselves, people are inundated by creative projects from other people, and also by desperate pitches to believe or do or feel so many different ways.

Marion said something else in her comment.  She said, “Creative success for me is when you can decide on the route to first start taking, get lost momentarily (but without fear) between where you think you’re heading and where the elements want you to go, enjoying the ride, and discovering a destination you had not initially thought of but are so glad you ended up finding randomly. Or is it random..?!”

I don’t think it’s random.  I think you can even pay attention and figure out where you’re going before you arrive, but to do that, you need to do something critical.  You have to listen.

On one level, this means to tune into your sphere of influence and be quiet for a while, try to erase your plans from your mind, and do not just chime in with some preconceived sales pitch until you get a sense for what people really need or wish in the moment, the present moment, in the real world.

On an other level, this means to listen to individuals, including yourself.  Not just the standard active listening and psychology tricks, but like literally, analyze the words people tell you about what’s happening with them, and even listen to your own subconscious narratives about your own projects.

I’ve had a number of friends call me lately to tell me they’ve been cancelling projects, projects they were totally fired up on, because they are realizing there’s just no need for them.  Nobody cares. 

And it’s awesome, because not only are those same people going to move on to new projects, better ones, but they’re going to do that with a sharper attention to the course changes on the way to their own unknown destinations.  The name of the game these days is listening first, then making your moves based on what you actually hear, not what you expect to hear.

If you enjoyed it this week’s video on the art of listening, do me a favor, go to the comments at the bottom of the page, and let me know what you’re hearing when you listen, either to yourself, or to the outside world, tell me what you feel your real creative opportunities are.

If you want to stay in the loop, check back next week here at, or sign up for the newsletter at the top of the page.  In the mean time, I look forward to reading your comments below, so thanks for tuning in!  See you soon

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Jesse Cameron
Jesse Cameron
April 7, 2020 07:36

Store your grain – this is a motto to live by without a doubt

April 19, 2020 11:18

In Indonesia we always say you have two ears and one mouth so you can listen more before you speak too much. On the other hand, I think you need to be selective of what you hear as well, that’s why analyzing, like what you mentioned in the article is important. Thanks for sharing!