When John Kells taught Pushing Hands there were the usual set of instructions. Maintain ward off, sink, relax, yield, turn the waist and turn the mind.
But one aspect stood out. To be interested in the other person. I have studied other Tai Chi styles pushing hands methods and none of them contain this approach. but then John Kells didn't teach a traditional approach.
What is interesting about it is that if we are not interested in the other person, then we are busy remembering self and causing a disconnection between ourselves and the other person. We use our clever techniques in isolation, demonstrating, in my opinion, a tense and fearful mind.
To be interested in the other person is to forget self. We need to open and embrace them, welcome them in. In this way a push can be accepted and transformed. Be so interested in the other person, use all your senses to listen to them. Be interested in the other person as if their touch was that of a lover. Then real communication can take place.
It may sound like a load of new age gobbeldy gook. It takes real courage and strength to be able to stand in front of another person in this way. Much easier, of course, to remember our habitual self and continue in ignorance.