I like words. I especially like song lyrics and insightful quotes. My children are routinely handed liner notes to read along while listening to music; they are frequently spellbound by the powerful words of long-since-dead people.
A while ago, I collected a couple dozen quotes, typed them out in Copperplate Gothic Light, and printed them to fit in a 5″ x 7″ frame. Every week I swap out the quote. The frame is positioned at the breakfast bar — where the children (and Rob and myself) are bound to see it.
This next one hasn’t made its first appearance, but it will soon be put it into the rotation:
When you talk, you are repeating what you already know.
When you listen, you are learning something new.
I like this quote.
It’s delivers a message similar to Zeno of Citium’s thought:
“We have two ears and one mouth, so we should listen more than we say.”
I like the first quote better because it’s a reminder to be humble in the presence of others and listen to what they might know.
(“Little-Miss-Smarty-Pants” was a nickname of mine for a stretch of time in the 1970’s. I heard it as a compliment despite the tone my elementary school principal used.)
This afternoon when I was with my husband’s family, I thought about the first quote. I listened more than I spoke. (I think.) And after twenty years of knowing Rob’s family, I think they’re beginning to like me more. (It could be that I’m mellowing out or they’ve built up a tolerance.)
I intend to practice the use of mouth/ear ratio at Christmastime.
Keep chanting it . . .