It is very important to understand this deep philosophical thought. By and large, hardly anybody needs us or is interested in us. If you understand, accept and constantly remember this, your life will change. People’s attitude towards you will also change.
Accepting this idea may be quite painful, but it will spare you many disappointments, failures and much greater pains in future.
People are interested in idols, which they have created for themselves based on their own, usually illusory notions. Your problems are interesting only to God and to someone who loves you very strongly and selflessly. As a rule, such people are parents, and in rare cases, husbands, wives or children.
Your problems may be interesting to your friends, but true friends are very rare.
Basically, people mostly listen selfishly: “Oh, you say you have a headache? Sorry to hear that, because of you we will miss the evening party.”
Your problems worry the people around you only to the extent to which you are connected with their ego and their life, to the extent to which they depend on what happens to you. That is why, before starting to tell the person you are talking to about your problems, you should ask yourself: “Are my problems, my life of any interest to this person?”
Exceptions to this are people who are inclined to play the “rescuer”: “I help people! I am great”. They are ready to listen patiently to your problems, however, they’re not interested in your joys, do not want to know that something good is happening in your life. They think that by listening and allegedly sympathizing, they are making a personal sacrifice. For a “fulfilling” emotional life, “rescuers” need people’s problems, they feed on such energy.
At best, such “rescuers” adopt the second level of listening, usually having an answer ready in advance for anything. And because they want to help from an egoistical point of view, their “help” only aggravates the situation and meets with aggression instead of gratitude from those whom they were trying to help, which is really a tremendous disappointment to them.
One of the indicators of the fact that you help people not for selfish reasons, but from the bottom of your heart, is the fact that, having helped somebody, you do not expect gratitude for that, but you thank God for the fact that he created such a situation in which you had an opportunity to serve other people.
That’s why before opening your mouth to tell something about yourself, to talk about something that is on your mind, you should ask yourself: “Is this really interesting to the person I am talking to? Is he ready and willing to hear something from me?”
THE ALCHEMY OF INTERPERSONAL RELATIONS: The Art of Listening and Being Heard