We are here to listen: The Listening Circle
A support group event initiated by Bhor Trust
I want to kick start this article by stating the importance of listening in human life.
The bench in a park looks meaningful when two people sit on it to listen to each other. A microphone has it’s meaning when there’s someone to listen to the speaker. Doors open, station arrives, the lady in the box calls the name of the place and we listen to our destination. The symphony and lyrics draw it’s existence because we listen. A newborn baby cries, we listen. A schoolboy recites, we listen. A teenager throws a tantrum, we try to listen. An adult complains, we shrug. A mother shares, we ignore. A father open his mouth, we only hear what we want to hear. Society mumbles, we have stop caring long time ago.
After reaching a certain age and testing waters by keeping mum about a lot of issues in my life, I realized nobody really ask anyone anything. Not because they don’t want to speak or share their stories with you, but because you are reluctant to listen. Surprisingly, it has less to do with time and more to do with emotional baggage. Who will want to listen to sad stories without feeling sense of loss and turmoil when they are escaping their own emotions?
But listening is an art. It needs practice and willingness. It’s when you realize that the other person is equally capable of listening to you as you are to them. Without mental judgement, or transfer of imposing beliefs, listening is just as easy as breathing; it has the same calming effects as breathing too.
Being part of Bhor Foundation that started as mental health awareness and inclusion program, I have initiated a support group system to grow the culture of listening in my city. That’s why we named it, the Listening Circle. It has to start small, though. From locality to locality. Baby steps.
For starters, the first chapter is for caregivers. Being a caregiver myself, I struggled with alienation and having less support around me for guidance and just listening. Giving care to a mental health survivor is equally a violent and hard journey. It’s just other side of the struggle story. Because of societal pressure, stigma, status-quo maintenance, and prejudiced notions of how a ‘family’ should live, each member of the family goes through mental pain and suffering.
The aim is to empower caregivers and for them to build their own support system.
Thus, I am inviting all the caregivers in the city ( Delhi-Delhi NCR, India), which includes giving self-care too, to Listening Circle event on every first Sunday of each month. Let’s listen to each other because we need this too. The first chapter is about to take place in four days, 4th March, 2018.
Click on the link/image below for further information:
Bhor is a non for profit mental health charity that is still working creatively under founder’s own expenses. We would love if you all could contribute by simply sharing above article on your social media.