Almost any book you grab on relationship is likely to have a section on communication.
People hear too often how relationships are built on communication and the effect its poor attempt could spill. This, I guess has made us focus so much on what to say, how to say and when to really say it.
There is yet another aspect which is least explored —LISTENING; and to the contrary it is one basic cause of problems. It’s assumed that if your ears are functioning properly, you should be able to listen and follow whatever is being said in a language known to you-listening to a strange language in conversation turns out most times to be a waste of time since your brain has not been trained to form images to describe what is said.
So, effective listening commences from the premise of common language of communication. Speaking a familiar language on its own is not a guarantee you’ll be understood as a lot comes between the speaker and the hearer. There are both external and internal factors identified as challenges to good listening.
A troubled mind has a lot of work to do; calming the soul to be able to absorb information, noise and interruption from immediate surrounding could be very irritating as well.
Trying to figure out answers while the person is still speaking is a complete distraction, judging the sense in what is being heard hinders a great deal and preparing defensive answers ruin the whole essence of talking.
I would have shared this before in one of my articles- The time was 5.30p.m. on a Sunday evening. Thomas, my darling husband had a long day at church, moving from one meeting to the other and rounding off with administrative support for his Pastor. A typical Sunday goes in similar coil, getting home is planned for a bit of unwinding followed by preparation to start the following week. Just as he was settling down in front of the TV to flip through his recorded programme Match Of The Day, the door bell rang and a family friend walked in without the members of his household —this was quite strange, they love visiting together.
After the initial greetings and all, Thomas continued to watch his match review. The man on the other hand, started a conversation about how his wife has been so sick and was actually in the hospital on admission.
I told him gently it wasn’t a good time for him to discuss such important issue but he felt probably I didn’t want him to talk to my husband about it. To his greatest shock, when the game ended, Thomas turned to him and asked why he didn’t come visiting with his wife and children as usual.
Can you imagine how that man felt? Ignored!!! But I told him it’s difficult to get my husband to listen and understand you when there’s a football match going on. Anyway, he had to repeat the whole story but I was not there to hear the conclusion. That was a case of external factor, football, hindering listening but how many individual thoughts flying through our minds while we are trying to listen can we keep track of?
This brings us to the agreement that listening is not a popular dimension of communication sought after by many yet, it holds the very string that delivers result —response. The basic reason for talking to people is to get their response either verbally or implied, making sure the information was absorbed. Listening makes your loved ones feel worthy, accepted, interesting and respected. The more you listen to someone, the more he/she feels important.Credit: Aidy Thomas, Culled from PM News