Visual Listening Makes Us Shockingly Funny, Creative, & Inspirational

Visual Listening Makes Us Shockingly Funny, Creative, & Inspirational

I initially wrote this article about the positive impacts of visual communications, focusing on humor, creativity, and the benefits of visual communications, especially when speaking with people with Alzheimer’s.  However, visual communication has since transformed my world by over 360 degrees, so I’m inclined to rewrite this article from scratch or rewrite this intro to tell you what it’s done for me, which shocks me.  It’s downright bizarre.

I’ve infused visual listening and communication with unconditional love, and my relationships have flourished dynamically.  A dear loved one is so engaged with me that we have wonderful, loving, endless conversations, filling us with joy.  And my employer is so happy with me that he laughs a lot now, as I put him at ease in a flash.

But other things are happening, too.  My work performance has become super focused and fun as I listen to Mission Impossible music all day and give myself incredibly upbeat self-talk through visual imagery.  My clients are significantly more engaged with me, as our conversations are more natural and friendly.  I rarely feel down or sensitive anymore, even if criticized, as I can easily roll with things by enjoying visual imagery to capture the other person’s perspective.  It’s empathy in an image.

Before I get off track, I’ll explain what visual communications are.  It’s simply listening closely to what people say in a way where we try visualizing it by making mini-movies or pictures in our heads.  By doing this, we start speaking about what we visually think: thoughts of movies and paintings.  But to infuse these images with love, it’s great to give them all happy endings, beautiful, warm imagery, and encouraging metaphors.

When we do that, especially through visual self-talk, we enter a state of joy that delights others.  This seems to be happening; I’m converting a negative personality trait I long ago ranked high on—oversensitivity—into a positive character strength.  Namely, I’m becoming more happy-go-lucky and easygoing.  However, at the same time, I am highly career-oriented and have big ambitions, especially given the continuous education I get during the evenings and weekends.

Furthermore, every troubling thought can be turned into a happy movie.  Sometimes, I’ll reassure my boss through metaphors and visuals on things I’m not sure I can deliver, but my words invoke great confidence in him and me.  And then I have such a detailed strategy with every single work action, mapped out on a calendar, tweaked every evening to fit better what works and what doesn’t, that my easygoing encouragement has merit.  And I’m so pumped by my own words that I respond with a high work focus that is intensely convicted.  It seems unreal, like a dream, but it works exceptionally well.  This is not my doing, though; I think it’s God.  That’s because I’m rapidly transforming in ways that are on automatic drive without requiring any keys.  It’s just all of a sudden so natural, out of nowhere.  God surely is the true source, whether we see God as Jesus (he’s my man!), Allah, the Buddha, our higher self, or something else with massive beauty.  Other than Him, I have no explanation.

With the above-revised intro for the article, I’ll continue with the article I wrote last week:

Visual communication makes for good humor.  Someone said her troubles were like “bugs in a sewer.” So, I said, “It’s the giant tentacle of a squid that reaches up through the toilet bowl while we’re on the throne.” I’m not funny, but visual communication suddenly makes us more amusing, although some may beg to differ.

As another example of visual communication, a loved one brushed his blonde hair, and I said, “Are you spinning gold?” His posture straightened, and his eyes sparkled a touch.  The beautiful visual brought us both joy.

And then someone mentioned beans and pizza.  So I asked if there was such a thing as pizza in a can.  There are hamburgers in a can, and people have inquired about pizza in a can on Reddit, although I’d never sell it, as it’s toxic.  The point is that visual communication leads to creative thinking.

On the career front, my employer was worried about our launch, and I said, “It’ll be so good; fish will fall from the sky and feed 5000.” He loved it, and it instantly calmed him.  So, visual communication leads to encouragement.

As another example, if my boss woefully says, “We are still waiting on Tim,” I’ll cheerfully say, “He’s about to deliver the final ingredient for our cake recipe for success,” and my employer brightens up.  I’ve just got to figure out how to make it work if I’m a CMO of a major public company twenty years from today.

Even dumb jokes are well-received, even when I say a cliché visual.  The dollar store lady said it was always busy, and I said, “It’s a constant Dollarama annual stampede of cattle and horses,” and she started laughing, much to my surprise.  People are laughing more often at what I say, and instead of smiling and laughing with them, I look at them momentarily in shock because I have never been funny before.  I only smile once I realize what I just said was funny.

To listen visually, we should think up pictures and visuals that come to us based on what the person says.  Then we could say what comes to mind, even if it’s pretty off the wall.  Ideally, it should be positive, encouraging, and loving.

Lastly, I know that people with Alzheimer’s like to be treated with smiles and joy and not be forced to recall anything past-oriented, as they likely will feel bad that they can’t remember it.  One woman’s dad, who had Alzheimer’s, discovered he loved playing with Barbies in his state, according to a book I read.

However, visual communication might be at least as effective as Barbies and other role-playing games when caring for those with Alzheimer’s.  With visual communications, we listen to what they say and paint a visual of it with a positive, happy spin.  So if they say, “The porch is filled with trees,” we can say, “All the parrots in Hawaii and birds of paradise are in those trees, smiling at you!” If they then ask, “Who is smiling at me?” We can say, “The forest is smiling at you with its big, lush green arms wrapping you in a hug.  The forests smile at you because we all love you! We smile with big red rosy cheeks, candy baskets, and friendly giggles!” And so on.

And now it’s midnight, and the soft night is wrapping us in its arms, singing a sweet lullaby, fueling us for a trophy win on the podium of life tomorrow.  Yes, those are things I might say to myself or others now.  If we try incorporating happy, feel-good visuals, especially ones filled with love for all others, we enter what truly feels like, at least for now, paradise on Earth.