What is listening? - Deepstash

What is listening?

Listening does not mean hearing just to respond. It is hearing to understand.

Listening is not to judge/analyse what the other person is saying, it means to fully concentrate on what is being said. It is about using empathy & compassion & understanding the complete message, including the underlying emotional message conveyed.

Active listening is a technique to develop our ability to listen and make an effort to truly understand what the other person is trying to say.

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THE ART OF LISTENING

Listening is perhaps the most important and the most difficult part of having a healthy conversation. The main reason why most people struggle with being good listeners is because of their ego and impatience.

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Listen for curiosity & not for the sake of listening.

When listening to someone, try to have your full focus on them & their story rather than getting distracted or reflecting on your past experience or thinking of an answer or comeback.

Ask questions and take into consideration the whole situation before coming to a solid conclusion. Try to take a step back and analyse the whole situation from the other person’s point of view before giving any answer.

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Poor listening skills create walls in Communication & make things difficult and build more chance for mishappenings and accidents, especially due to miscommunication or incorrect assumptions/conclusions.

Listen to actually understand what they’re saying.

Don’t try to finish their sentences or interrupt them, allow them to finish, that way you can have a proper idea of their point of view and come to a better conclusion.

Try to avoid any & all narcissism. Try not to make it all about you or think about your own past experiences while the person is talking.

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Being a good listener makes you an even better communicator.

Listening is not only a learning opportunity for you, but it is also one of the fastest and easiest way of making friends & building your network. As human beings we are social creatures & by actively listening to people around us, we are able to connect, co-operate, develop & understand ourselves and each other.

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RELATED IDEAS

We mistake listening as easy because it looks passive and instinctive, but in reality it’s hard work. Really listening (and not just appearing to listen) requires intense concentration and a good deal of mental energy.

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Stephen R. Covey

“Seek first to understand, then to be understood.”

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  1. Ignore internal and external distractions (thoughts and sounds).
  2. Listen to the content of their speech and their specific wording
  3. Listen to the context of their speech. Keep in mind the circumstances and themes and how they relate what’s being said.
  4. Listen to the tone of their voice. It conveys the speaker’s feelings.
  5. Listen for the emotions the speaker is likely experiencing so they will feel understood.
  6. Pay attention to their body language and make appropriate eye contact.
  7. Provide small verbal encouragements and don't fight silences.
  8. Ask open-ended questions to encourage elaboration and further your understanding of the big picture.
  9. If you need them to slow down or want specific info, ask close-ended questions.
  10. Offer affirmations that the person has made valuable and important choices.

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