Listen with the intent to understand, not reply

Once in a while, we may find ourselves being stuck in the middle of an argument with others and most of the time the root cause may be as simple as not listening clearly or not listening enough. Like Stephen R. Covey said,

“Most people do not listen with the intent to understand; they listen with the intent to reply.” 

Although there are times when we feel fully engrossed in someone’s words and can sympathise with the one sharing with us, there are also times when we are all guilty of thinking about what to reply in our minds instead of trying to understand what the speaker is saying. Well yes, it may be practical when you need to exchange a lot of information to one another in a short time, but generally, practicing more on listening completely will be very beneficial.

“You cannot truly listen to anyone and do anything else at the same time.” –M. Scott Peck

Not to mention our gadgets. How often to do we find yourself scrolling through Instagram or reading our e-mails when someone is trying to talk to us. Even though it’s just casual conversations, being distracted by other things while “listening” to someone should be minimised and if possible avoided completely.

“One of the most sincere forms of respect is actually listening to what another has to say.” –Bryant H. McGill

Even though listening may seem like a simple, mindless thing, we should put more awareness to how we listen because just it is just as important as learning to talk properly to others. By being good listeners, we can build stronger relationships, learn a lot from others, and gain so much more. Start making listening a habit and be a better listener to everyone around you.


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