I would like to tell you about a valuable rule that I learnt few years ago. The rule is: Don’t be interesting. Be interested.
This simple rule can have profound implication on kids. It can help them make friends, learn from others and develop good character and leadership qualities.
We spend a lot of time try to be interesting to people. I think a lot of positive can come if we try to be interested in others rather than being interesting to others.
Ever think why some people are so good at making friends? One of the key reasons is that these people are good at being interested in other people. People feel free to approach them and talk to them. They know consciously or subconsciously that this person would listen to me and make me feel better.
Most of us try to be interesting to others because we think that if we do so, others would like to listen to us. That may be the case. However, that would not make them our friends. To make good friends, you need to understand others, understand the problems they are facing, ask them deeper and meaningful questions and help them make their own right decisions. Just by listening and being interested, you can help people think louder and guide them to correct decisions.
You can learn a lot about various things by being interested in others. Every one of us has lived and learnt a few good lessons in our lives by experience or from others. By being interested, you can learn about various situations, important rules and regulations & priceless teachings of life.
You can become better at what you do if you are interested in your peers, teachers and people around you. You can become a good leader if you listen and understand what challenges and opportunities people are facing.
It is very important to be genuinely interested in others. If you do it just for the sake of it, it would be of no value to yourself or anyone else. You should do so with the goal of trying to understand them, learn from them and help them, if possible.
I can't say that I live this rule perfectly. I find that I spend more time trying to be interesting than exercising the discipline of asking genuine questions. But whenever I remember this little rule - whenever I come at any situation with an interested and curious mind - life becomes much more interesting for everyone around.
If you want to have an interesting dinner conversation, be interested. If you want to have interesting things to write, be interested. If you want to meet interesting people, be interested in the people you meet - their lives, their history, their story. Where are they from? How did they get here? What have they learned? By practicing the art of being interested, the majority of people can become fascinating teachers; nearly everyone has an interesting story to tell.
To summarize: By being interested in others, you can make friends, help others & learn from everyone.