WHO'S LISTENING TO YOUR MUSIC?
The presence of an attentive listener brings out your greatness
This evening on my way home from running an errand, I passed by this guy noodling away on his accordian. He wasn’t playing any particular tune, just riffing and kind of halfheartedly plunking at the keys.
It filled my heart with joy.
For a moment, I was transported to Paris, and then I was elated by the fact that this is happening around the corner from where I live, this is a beautiful little sliver of my world in this moment.
I kept walking.
A few steps later, I stopped and turned to look back. People were moving past him just like I had, not even looking at him.
IN THE SUMMER OF 2020, I AM ESPECIALLY APPRECIATIVE OF BEAUTY IN THE WORLD, AND THOSE WHO PROVIDE IT.
So I walked back over to him, placed three dollars in his empty bucket, and asked if I could record him playing. I didn’t have any particular plan for the video, I mostly just wanted him to feel appreciated.
Sure, sure, he said, and he launched into this little number, doggedly continuing to play even as a gust of wind tried to blow his hat off his head:
So at the end of that tune I’m cheering him on and the accordian guy tells me have a great weekend and I’m about to leave….
But we’re on a happy roll together, he and I, so he immediately jumps in with, “You know the Tennessee Waltz?”
IT TURNS OUT HAVING AN APPRECIATIVE AUDIENCE — AN AUDIENCE OF ONE, EVEN — INSPIRED HIM TO GREATER HEIGHTS, AND THIS TIME HE BROKE OUT IN SONG WHILE HE PLAYED HIS BIG ENCORE NUMBER:
I just recorded this video about two hours ago, and I’ve already watched it several times. I am moved by it.
I love how he can’t remember the lyrics and he just keeps playing and then picks up the song again when the words come to mind.
I love the flourish at the finish, followed by a tip of his hat.
I love that he reached out to fist bump and we connected. (Yes, it’s pandemic time, and not to worry, I was wearing my mask, and I washed my hands.)
Most of all, I love the look of satisfaction on his face at the end…and then he wishes me good luck and admonishes me not to go near the lake because it’s going to storm. Very sweet.
I love how happy he looks.
As I walked the final block home, I felt pretty damn light and happy myself. It feels good to have given someone the gift of attention and appreciation, even if for only a few minutes.
You know what? It’s also pretty great to have someone share their heart with you.
What I was most struck by, however, was how important it is to have people listen to us — how we perk up and get all clever and inspired when there’s a BEING to speak to, a fellow human to play the accordian for.
Do you have people in your life — or someone in your life — who is there to listen to you and for you?
Some of our best ideas and most inspired moments get created in that magical space between us and the other being or beings in our presence.
I THINK IT’S WORTH LOOKING AT WHETHER YOU HAVE SUFFICIENT COMMUNITY IN YOUR LIFE RIGHT NOW.
Who do YOU have to listen to you play your music…and in the process inspire you be your best self, singing your song whether you remember all the lyrics or not? It’s worth going after that.
As I have had the great honor and pleasure of facilitating Moxie’s Soul Care Masterclass groups, I have been blown away by the alchemy and gracious support and love present in these communities of women. It has been a balm for my own soul during a tumultuous time, this cohort of kindred spirits listening to and for each other. And now the very first Advanced Soul Care group is kicking off a grand 4-month journey together.
LAST YEAR I WAS FEELING THE NEED FOR MORE COMMUNITY. NOW I HAVE IT IN MY LIFE, AND I’M SO, SO GRATEFUL.
Does this resonate with you and your own experience? What kind of difference has it made at different times in your life to have someone really listening?
And what’s it like for YOU when you provide that gift to someone else?
Please drop a comment below and share your own thoughts — I’m listening, my friend. 🧡
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