+14

When I was growing up, back in the 60's, someone gave me some advice on building friendships and relationships. They said the most valuable thing a person needed to learn, was to let the person they were with, know that they were important to me. The second, was to learn how to listen to the person I was with. I think many people have lost this over recent years. I took my wife to the movies last night. As we whispered back and forth, before the movie started, I looked around at other couples in the theater. Many were on their cell phones, checking messages or texting. They may as well have been alone. How many times do you see people with friends or families, in public places, or out to eat, and nobody is talking with each other? They are all on their phones. What is that telling those who they are with? Either you are spending time with someone or you aren't. Those who use a lame excuse that they can do both, need to re-evaluate their priorities. I once had a meeting with a Colonel back in the 80's as a young Captain. Before the meeting began, he took off his watch and set it aside. I didn't know it at the time, but he was making a symbolic gesture that although his time was valuable, I wasn't "on the clock", and he valued my time and conversation. It's a lesson I never forgot. I hope that during this New Year, you will also realize the importance of certain people in your lives and give them the attention and respect they deserve.