From The Storyteller
Oct. 8, 2018, Hummm
My teenage grandson is explaining to me this really great new idea his friend has suggested. I am listening to him share something I have suggested to him at least a thousand times. As the conversation progresses, I slowly put a finger on my lips and my hand on my hip. This prevented me from saying something that didn’t need to be said. It also stops me from slapping the table for emphasis. All I say is, “Hummm.”
This is called the “Hip and Lip” technique, which I learned it from the preschool director in George West. She explained that a child, with one finger on their lip and their hand on their hip, is both silent and not touching anybody else. It saw it work well with preschoolers, and have found it to be an excellent tool for keeping Doug from saying things that don’t need to be said.
Example: “Hip and Lip” works really well when our children and grandchildren are sharing their hopes and dreams. Here they are not asking for advice, and my role is to basically listen and appreciate them for who they are. In these conversations the “Lip” technique often covers a smile as I hear youthful optimism at its best. Again, my reaction is limited to “Hummm.”
Over the years I have learned that heated political conversations, and lasting friendships don’t exist in the same space. I can have one or the other, but not both. I have chosen lasting friendships. This does not mean my friends follow the same rule. Thus, when those times arise and I am listening to a friend who I deeply feel needs to be corrected, - “Hip and Lip” time.
Moral: Not all comments need to be spoken. A simple “Hummm” is often enough.