Sunday, March 08, 2015

Love with mind: The value of remembering

In my quest to explore the mind's role in love, I'm considering the value of remembering.

Here are things we might remember:

* The name of someone we just met
* Someone's birthday or anniversary
* Someone's favorite food
* Someone's usual order at a restaurant
* Someone's pet peeve
* A time that the other person helped us
* A time that the other person accomplished or achieved something
* The kind words that they spoke
* The favor that they did
* Someone's favorite musician or song
* Someone's favorite book, author, or movie
* Someone's favorite outfit, if they're into that kind of thing
* Someone's favorite hobby
* Someone's favorite game
* Someone's favorite topic of conversation
* Someone's area of expertise

Our minds can help us focus on noticing the other person. If we value them, if we consider it worthwhile to get to know them, then we will become familiar with them. We will notice and remember their likes and dislikes.

This is the internet, so it bears mentioning: this is not to be done in an intrusive, stalker-ish way. It is not love to pry or dig for information that the other person has not given us. Instead, whenever someone reveals or shares information, we can consider that as worthwhile, and keep the knowledge and understanding of the other person as a treasure.


John Flanagan said...

I agree that it is good to strive to improve our memories and learn specific things about the people close to us, as well as those whom we encounter in life in our work, recreation, and in our churches. I believe we must cultivate a willingness to listen, before even speaking in social encounters. Have you ever met people who are so self absorbed that they will talk primarily about themselves, and rarely in conversation will inquire about you or your life? Such people merely use others as "sounding boards" in which to articulate aspects of their own life ad nauseum. Then, in social encounters of late, one meets many people who are so engaged in their cellphones or IPads that they rarely look up, faces and eyes fixed on the tiny screens they are holding. Others may have an earplug stuck in their ear and are consumed with listening to the songs on their playlist. Social encounters today are very complicated because of these new technical "gadgets" and therefore communication is in very short sentences and brief tweets. A woman recently told me her 21 year old son was sitting at the kitchen table ignoring her efforts to converse with him, as his focus was entirely devoted to his IPhone screen. So, sitting just a couple of feet away, she sent him a text message. He received the text and said, " Why text me? I'm sitting right here! She answered, " I know, but this is the only way I can talk to you.!" I really wonder how social interactions will change in the future. Right now, the pattern doesn't look good. .

Martin LaBar said...

Yes. I should do a better job at remembering the things that those dear to me hold dear.


Weekend Fisher said...

Hi John

What you see: yep, I've seen it too. And I have a fairly regular "conversation" with someone who tends to monologue for the duration of the visit, without asking after anyone else at the table.

But as far as changing the future ... well, that's our end of the deal.

I have to admit being fond of facebook. It makes it easy to leave an encouraging comment or give a thumbs-up to someone I'd hardly see on an average day.

Take care & God bless
Anne / WF

Weekend Fisher said...

Hi Martin

I think, for me, I wonder: How many times can I ask the same person whether they'd rather have this or that, without them wondering: Why am I asking that same question again? Didn't I pay enough attention to remember?

So I'm working on remembering.

Take care & God bless
Anne / WF

Kevin Knox said...

I thought you might find some interesting fodder here.

Weekend Fisher said...

That was an interesting read, for sure. It strikes a chord with some things I've noticed lately. For example, recently I've taken up writing poetry regularly, a few times a week: haiku in particular because it's short enough that I can actually manage it in a few minutes whenever I find them. And I've been amazed at how much more I see, how much more I get out of looking, now than I did a few months ago. Looking is definitely a learned art, & you do get better with practice. And feeling what you see makes quite a difference.

Take care & God bless
Anne / WF