Let Me Tell You About My Sprouts . . . even if you don’t care

 In Better Life, Focusing on the positive, Relationships

Life is richer when we have interesting things to think about, to talk about, and to do. These are topics that we may find fascinating, want to learn more about, or just enjoy. For example, I just started experimenting with growing my own sprouts from seeds to use in salads. I’ve also been playing around with different teas for making Kombucha. And I’ve been attending different virtual conferences related to nutrition, cancer, and disease. I’m never bored because I always have interesting things to think about.

I’m lucky. My family’s supportive of my various jars and “potions” in the kitchen. And they listen when I excitedly talk about my latest insight from a health topic or my wonder at how quickly seeds sprout.

But what if they didn’t care? What if they rolled their eyes or ignored me? I know they’re NOT interested in sprouts, fermented drinks, and the latest research on health. Yet their willingness to “care” about my interests not only fuels my enthusiasm but also makes me feel loved. It strengthens our relationship and boosts my happiness.

Just like the importance of how we respond to other people’s good news matters, so does our response to their hobbies and interests. But let’s be honest. Sometimes it’s hard to take the time (and find the patience) to listen when it’s a topic that doesn’t matter to us. For example, my daughter’s love of fashion, Minecraft, and TikTok memes. Or my husband’s love of hunting, bushcraft, and tinkering with mechanical stuff.

As I’ve come to realize the immense importance of my response to them, I’ve discovered it’s easier when I celebrate their enthusiasm instead of focusing on the specific topic. I’m trying to getting better at being happy because they’re happy.

How about you? Do you show interest in other people’s interests? Or do you sometimes find yourself being impatient or dismissive? Try reminding yourself that your response matters.

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