Listening: One of the Hardest Things You Will Ever Do

Blog / Produced by The High Calling
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No doubt about it. Listening is one of the hardest things you will ever do. Most people do not know how to listen. They think they do, but they don't. Someone begins speaking and they pay attention with about 1/4 of their mind. One part of their mind is casually paying attention. Another part is listening to music, thinking about something else, or (worst of all) planning what they will say in response. You can't listen like that. Listening is a rich, full experience. You have to take a deep breath and watch the person who is speaking. You have to watch their body language and watch for expressions of emotion on their face. After all, body language and inflection carry most of the meaning. New High Calling blogger Hollie Atkinson writes about the art of listening in a recent post. "When good communication takes place, the listener listens with their whole being. Their ears are tuned in, certainly, but their eyes are focused, and their whole body says, “I am interested in what you are saying.” Good listening means letting your eyes light up - raising your eyebrows - expressing interest verbally like, “Oh, wow!” “Is that right?” “Are you serious?” “How about that!” People tend to keep talking about a subject that they think someone is interested in. People who are skilled at listening are concerned with two tasks: 1) They must hear and understand what the speaker is saying, making sure that they are not hearing more than the speaker is saying. 2) They must encourage the speaker to continue to communicate." ... Read More Families Matter
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