On listening and courage

I’ve been thinking about the concept of listening recently, in two ways:

• What does listening look like? How do I do it?

• How do I know I am being truly listened to?

Because everyone wants to be heard, right? And anyone who knows another well enough to have more than 4.3 arguments is familiar with the back and forth “you’re not really listening to me!” “Yes, I am listening, you’re not hearing me.”

Or, if you’re a confidant and a friend shares with you drama with their partner/friend/co-working/etc., it’s often easier to see where the parties involved aren’t truly hearing each other.

So we are good at spotting when someone else isn’t listening. Not so good at realizing it about ourselves.

I think listening takes a lot of courage. It’s hard to stop talking. It’s hard to not make your point. It’s hard to hear something you think is wrong and not correct it. It’s hard to be vulnerable. It’s hard to face something you want to ignore. It’s hard to be wrong. It’s hard to walk away when necessary.

Just some musings from the last few days. I’m challenged to listen more. To think outside myself more. To trust my instincts more.

What do you think?
Does listening take courage?
Do you think you listen well or are listened to?

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4 replies
  1. Kelly @ Leafy Not Beefy
    Kelly @ Leafy Not Beefy says:

    Love it! It is really hard sometimes for me to know when to speak and when to be silent. I think I am a fairly good listener. I don’t think I’m always listened to, but try to not take it to heart too much, though sometimes I admit I do.

    • LarissaDaltonS
      LarissaDaltonS says:

      So hard not to take things personally. Probably just as hard to put yourself in another’s place and understand if you’re hurting them. Sigh* The intent means something right? We’ll never be perfect at this, but we’re working to be aware.

  2. Lisa @ Lisa Runs for Cupcakes
    Lisa @ Lisa Runs for Cupcakes says:

    I have to say, that you are so spot on with this assessment. As a social worker, I really work hard to “listen” to what my clients are telling me. Now, that is often times hard to translate into my personal life when I am not “on” at work. Always, a work in progress but self awareness is the key!

    • LarissaDaltonS
      LarissaDaltonS says:

      Do you go home and feel like “Ok, now it’s time for someone to listen to ME.” I imagine that social work would be a very draining profession. Hopefully very rewarding as well. You have my utmost respect, doing what you do!


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