Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Becoming a better listener.

I sat across from my new friend sipping ginger tea in her kitchen.

Her words came out slowly and sometimes almost in a whisper, and I felt my shoulders relax.  I took a deep breath, and somehow her peaceful energy that she let off changed the whole energy in the room.

I didn't know it at the time, but she's a much better listener than I am.

Fast forward a week.

I pulled an old book I use to love off the shelf and put in our bathroom.  Anything I want to read occasionally or I'd like Joel to pick up- I put in the bathroom.

Today I read the two page section called "Become a Better Listener."  And although I know I've read it before, I didn't see the truth in it like I do today.

"In some ways, the way we fail to listen is symbolic of the way we live.  We often treat communication
as if it were a race.  It's almost like our goal is to have no time gaps between the conclusion of the sentence of the person we are speaking with and the beginning of our own." -Richard Carlson, Ph. D.

I'm an introvert, and talking to a new friend can be very draining, but not with her.  She was slow and thoughtful with her words, something I admired and appreciated.  I noticed how it made our conversation deeper in moments and pressure-free.

"Slowing down your responses and becoming a better listener aids you in becoming a more peaceful person.  It takes pressure off of you.  If you think about it, you'll notice that it takes en enormous amount of energy and is very stressful to be sitting at the edge of your seat trying to guess what the person in front of you (or on the telephone) is going to say so that you can fire back your response.  But as you wait for the people you are communicating with to finish, as you simply listen more intently to what is being said, you'll notice that the pressure you feel is off.  You'll immediately feel more relaxed, and so will the people you are talking to." -Richard Carlson, Ph. D.

So glad I stumbled onto those two pages :)
Are you a good listener?


  1. Lovely post. I've been working to be a better listener for years, ever since I met someone who was a good listener :) amazing how people's behavior can change you. It's a work in progress of course.

  2. To listen is to put someone else's speaking, thinking and feeling needs first.
    It feels great when someone else does that for you!


"Perhaps you will forget tomorrow the kind words you say today, but the recipient may cherish them over a lifetime." -Dale Carnegie

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