At a recent ecology presentation, the speaker recalled how she had fallen in love with nature camping in the Rocky Mountain National Park.She referenced one park ranger who particularly influenced her because the ranger carried a stethoscope on all their nature hikes. The ranger would often hold the stethoscope up to a tree and listen. It made me wonder, are there other careers where we could be carry stethoscopes?
There is something delightful about a park ranger holding up a stethoscope to the trunk of a large pine tree. I can only imagine the wonder in children’s eyes as they hope to hear the heartbeat of a tree.Perhaps they heard noises of insects in the bark or if wildly imaginative, the rushing of water from the roots to the trees and sugars pouring down from leaves to roots.
What would you hear if you carried a stethoscope?
There is much written about the art of listening. Two areas of frequent commentary are on proactive and deep listening. Proactive listening is about being curious and asking powerful questions to truly understand the perspective of another person.Deep listening is listening beyond the words and also listening for the emotions and what is being implied. Deep listening involves empathy, observation, curiosity, and listening from a judgment free place. The “deep listenener” truly wants to understand the speaker.
As a deep listener with a stethoscope what would you hear beyond the words? Perhaps you’d hear frustration, concerns, reservation, or even anger. Or maybe you’d notice that in the heartbeat of someone is joy, anticipation, energy, adventure, desire to learn, or longing for achievement. If your stethoscope allowed you to hear the entire person would you respond and engage differently?
For one day this week, try literally or figuratively wearing a stethoscope? See what you hear among your friends, colleagues and family members. What are you picking up that you were not hearing before? Perhaps, just like the ranger in the national park, you will remembered because of your skill, presence and desire to truly understand the essence of others.
Enjoy hearing those heartbeats!