We don’t listen

It sounds obvious I know, but listening skills always start with listening. We know we should, but do we listen, I mean really listen?

I don’t think we do, primarily because we’re often preoccupied with our own thoughts and that stops us from listening to what other people have to say. Perhaps in a way it’s easier because we don’t have to communicate that way, or perhaps where we are in our lives makes us less inclined to want to hear about other people and their problems.

To listen, we must always pay attention and that’s not always easy. It’s far easier for someone else to pay attention and for us to talk, than it is for us to listen and someone else talk. We start off with good intentions but get distracted along the way.

Others may have no intention of listening because they’re simply not interested in what we have to say, or they’ve heard it all before. It may also depend on how others communicate with us. Some of us will use talking as a means of dictating what they want and that’s not what people generally want.

I have always tried to avoid those kind of conversations, because they only end up in arguments, no matter how the conversation starts. I’m also not sure we merely in a habit of really not caring about anyone but ourselves. In today’s society it seems we put ourselves first.


20 Aug, 2014

2 thoughts on “We don’t listen

  1. It’s really aggravating when others only think of themselves and don’t listen to others. I try to keep eye contact when I listen or talk.

    With my son I have him look at me when I’m talking to him so I know he will hear me. With having ADHD his mind wanders and I know he doesn’t really listen to me unless he is looking at me. I think this can be true with others also.

    We need to have full attention when we’re talking or listening. I also think listening is a skill we have to learn just like talking.

    1. Thanks Lisa. I agree with you.

      Listening is a skill. We can get better at, but only when we learn to channel our hearing and listening skills so that we’re actually listening! I also agree Lisa that we need to keep eye contact with the other person when we listen, so they at least know we’re listening.

      I don’t think we do any of those well enough. We’re there but we’re not really there! Our minds are usually somewhere else.

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