I’ve been there. You’ve been there. Not much sense in denying it. You know what I mean. You’re hearing someone speaking to you, maybe he or she is instructing you on a task or giving you feedback on your photo, but you’re not really listening. Right? Instead, you’re allocating brain cycles thinking of how to retort or defend yourself or come up with an excuse. It’s ok. Like I said, I’ve been there… many times over.
And sometimes all it takes is a very poignant article, in this case by the illustrious Seth Godin, to bring me back to my senses and remind me that “the listener has nearly as big a responsibility as the speaker does“. The first question that came to my mind was, “How do I go about becoming a better, more engaged listener”? Seth also makes it easy to figure that one out: “The hardest step in better listening is the first one: do it on purpose. Make the effort to actually be good at it”.
Seth’s post brings up a really important skill (because engaged listening truly is a skill) that I think a lot of us can improve on. I reckon that doing so will lead to a much more copacetic life for everyone involved.