“Most people do not listen with the intent to understand; they listen with the intent to reply.”
–Stephen R. Covey
Think about that for a minute.
(Okay, has it been a minute? Did you think about it? Good.)
Aren’t we all guilty of this in one way or another? During arguments or heated discussions, most of us have a tendency to get defensive- and when we are being defensive, we are no longer participating in a discussion to try to better understand the opposing viewpoints. We come by it honestly. Heck, even kids are guilty of this! Have you ever tried to argue with a stubborn 5-year-old? They will come up with the craziest excuses to prove that they aren’t wrong or guilty.
I think all adults are equally as guilty of this when it comes to discussions about GMO crops, organic versus non-organic, food additives, etc. I have had countless conversations with people who have differing views from me and many of those conversations end with me just giving up. I enjoy having conversations in order to better understand where people are coming from, and I would like for them to learn a little something about my viewpoints in return. But some people are just impossible; they are only listening to what you have to say in order to come up with a response to prove that you are wrong. To me, that is a pointless conversation.
Once in a while, I get to have a real conversation with someone who genuinely wants to learn more about these topics and hear about my experiences and opinions. And in turn, I want to know what their concerns are and where those concerns came from. AND IT IS MAGICAL. Both people always walk away from those conversations with a better understanding and a little something to mull over.
You may be asking yourself, “Hmmm… I wonder what brought this topic up for Rosie today.” I am so glad you asked!
The Food Babe visited the University of Florida last week and gave a speech to the students and faculty about “how to avoid bad foods” based on her opinions. Keep in mind this woman is not a scientist, nor does she have any experience in the food industry whatsoever. She has made a living for herself by using fear mongering on social media to build an army of scared and angry consumers who attack various companies and get them to change the ingredients they use in their food. A professor from the horticulture department on campus wrote a blog in response to her visit, and I think it is wonderful. You can read it here.
Okay, I’m getting off my soapbox. Just do me a favor and take a moment before your next discussion about food to remind yourself to listen to understand, not just to reply. Please and thank you!