In The Virgin Way by Richard Branson, he writes that the number one way to tell if someone isn’t listening is if they say, “I hear you.” I use that expression sometimes, so perhaps I need to examine my listening skills!
Some people say listening is not hearing, or hearing is not listening. Which is more important? What’s the difference? I think it’s a case of semantics, but something fun to write about, in any case.
- Listen (definition): To give one’s attention to sound. To pay attention.
- Hear (definition): Perceive with the ear. To listen with attention.
They seem pretty interchangeable to me, but perhaps one difference is that listening can be done with more than just your ears.
Today’s inspiration: LISTEN (my definition): To connect
How to do it: If you want to take in what someone is saying, listen with all of your senses.
- Words said
- Words not-said
- Tone of voice
- Body language
- Facial expressions
- Energy around what is being said. Your energy. Their energy.
- Dogs smell our emotions. We are capable of doing the same.
- Literally, notice the physical reaction in your mouth.
- Keep eye contact
- Be present
- Thinking how the other person is similar to or different from you
- Thinking about how you are going to respond
Remind yourself we are all one. The person who is speaking is a piece of you. Learn about yourself by absorbing what they have to say.
“The word ‘listen’ contains the same letters as the word ‘silent’.”