TOO OFTEN WE forgo listening and accept our own assumptions

about our Other’s experience. We construct a story in our

own minds about their intentions, their feelings,

their opinions. Yet, we cannot trust our own

assumptions until we have

confirmed them with

our Other.



In order to understand

deeply, we need to draw out our Other

with curiosity, asking them for more details,

speaking back to them what we think we have heard so they

may clarify. And it is important to be kind and open in our interpretation of our

Other’s revealed inner-world, for rarely is a person’s intention as cruel as we imagine.


THESE ACTIONS FILL the tiny cracks forming in the foundation of your bridge, heal the tiny misconceptions and misalignments before they spread and splinter and compromise the whole structure.


And it is important to know that understanding is temporary. A relationship is not a singular fact of knowing one another once and for all, but the process of continuously seeking to know again and again. For we are always shifting and growing. Every time we look out across the chasm, we look with fresh eyes. Each time we behold a person with a novel story that, however familiar, we need to hear anew.