Hey guys I hope you’re all doing well.
Today in my class I was learning about communication (in my module of work and organisational psychology), so it was mainly talking about using information technology in order to communicate in the workplace. Anyway there was something said that stood out to me, in regards to listening
“You can be hearing someone but not listening. Listening is paying intentional attention to what they’re saying and trying to gauge meaning”
And I thought that was really interesting, because sometimes when we’re speaking to people, we’re only hearing them talking but not paying attention to what they’re actually saying. Have you ever had when someone is talking and your mind is elsewhere, and you’ve realise you have no idea what they’re actually saying!
I used to think that I’m a great communicator, I can articulate myself (most of the time), and say exactly what I mean. But half of communication isn’t just talking it’s actually listening. When someone comes with me with a problem, am I just listening to what I want to hear, have I already concluded what I think they’re going to say, am I just waiting for them to stop talking so I can say what I can think is best?
Am I actually listening?
The reason why I thought this is important to talk about, is because we’re in an uncertain time right now where there is so much going on in the world, it can be hard to stop and listen to each other. It can be hard to take time and listen to how someone else is actually feeling. Or even to listen to ourselves and how we’re feeling. Often times we miss the important things that people are saying because we’re not actually listening. Or we may be focusing on everything else and not listening to what they’re actually saying.
I was looking at the protests going on, and I could hear noises, and the marching and shouting, but I wasn’t actually hearing them properly. I’m sure a lot of people are like that, maybe are seeing everything going on, but have you listened to why so many people are fighting? Have you listened to why people are upset, and why they are angry or hurt or disappointed, have you taken the time to listen?
When we approach a situation, it’s best not to have a preconceived notion or idea what you think someone else is going to say, don’t just hear them but listen to them. Ask questions, understand why. Don’t let the defensive block a wall between you listening to what others are saying. One time I was discussing with someone about privilege, and particularly how white people (knowingly and unknowingly to them) have a privilege, and the moment I mentioned that, there was a wall and immediately they went into the defensive, but they weren’t actually listening to what I was saying or trying to understand my point. So at that point it was like talking to a brick wall, because they weren’t thing to listen. So, if for example , someone was to question you for doing something, let’s say saying the n-word in a song, instead of going up into the defensive and immediately “I’m not a racist”, without listening to the reason why it’s not appropriate to say it, and the history behind that word.
You know, the world could be a much better place if we actually just listened to each other a bit more. Listen to why someone is hurting.
Listen. Intentionally pay attention to what I’m saying.
Thank you so much for reading this post.
– peace joy & love