The art of listening

Dave Pollard says about listening,

Listening is a skill, like talking or walking. We learn it by practice; we lose that skill by not practicing it. Its mastery is necessary to competent conversation, even to empathy: If we cannot really hear others, how can we understand them, and if we cannot understand them, how can we care about them?

With reference to Pohangina Pete he also says,

Whisper to an animal, instead of talking (or shouting!) and watch its surprised and attentive response. Listen attentively, carefully, without interjecting or thinking about how to respond, in a conversation with another human talking about something they care about, and you will get that same astonished, rapt response. It even works on the telephone — people can hear you listening.

That reminds me when I was a scout-leader. To get full attention from all kids you better had to talk with a low voice. Well, how to learn how to be a better listener? Dave gives us 10 advice,

  1. Close your eyes.
  2. Get away from noise.
  3. Learn to meditate.
  4. Listen with your eyes.
  5. In meetings, say less.
  6. Practice interviewing, and facilitating others’ conversations.
  7. Record or write down what you hear.
  8. Eavesdrop on others’ conversations.
  9. Find model good listeners.
  10. Teach your children how to listen.

I remember specially that one saying you should should listen to another person without thinking of what to answer.

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