Are you really a listener?

Greece
March 5, 2010 5:46am CST
I think many of us would like to think that we are listeners and that we listen well but what does that really mean? Think about it for a minute. Do you listen to someone so that they can listen to you in return? For example, you ask someone how their day was and while they are answering, you are just waiting for them to finish, alsmost rushing them to the end so that you can then tell them all about your day and have them empathise with you. Are you listening or just wishing in the back of your mind, that this person would just shut it. Point in case, there is this girl at work and she is someone who is pleasant enough. She definitely has a big heart. When she starts talking about her imagined illnesses and problems in life and how life is just so hard, the antibiotics she's taking, how hard her pregnancy was, how her mother-in-law is just a wicked controlling woman, how her husband doesn't support her...get the picture, or do I need to go on? There is more if you like :) Well, for me, in this scenario, I just can't be a listener beyond a point. I mean what am I really listening to? A person who just doesn't see the bigger picture. Who needs to draw all this sympathy from her ever burdensome awful existence. Its draining and after a certain point, I had to distance myself and STOP listening altogether. Does your listening have heart and soul attached to it? If a hot distraction walked by, would it distract you entirely or just for a moment? For me I think it would depend on the degree of listening that's required. If my friend is talking about something intense and serious, checking out the fairground attraction and saying, "mmm, mmm, dinner's in the oven" might not be so appropriate. However, if we were having light conversation and sharing, we may very well welcome the hot cross buns gliding by. Heh. Do you have that voice in your head chatting along when you are listening? For some people, its impossible to shut it off, it just goes on and on, lifetime guarantee. Usually this kind of listening is analytical, taking to bits what the person is saying and responding very cleverly, sometimes to show superiority, sometimes to indicate understanding, sometimes just because listening isn't really a skill that they posses. Its the idea of listening but not actual listening that is taking place. Some people listen with more than just their ears. They do it with their eyes too. If you do posses this quality, you probably have a great sense of instinct and people marvel at how you understand so much about a situation or person in short periods of time. Some are even jealous and skeptical of your ability. Many a time the skeptics become believers because the scenario will unravel itself and prove you do indeed have skill. You are probably someone who can make distinctions that many people don't make and therein lies your power. These types of people I believe are the true listeners. They appear more intelligent and dynamic than others. In actual fact, all they are doing is making use of their God given abilities. Anyone who wants to, can. So do tell. What do you reckon? Now that you have listened (in a way) to me, its my turn. I'm all ears.
2 people like this
13 responses
• Pakistan
5 Mar 10
Iam a listener because i listen to what i say i guess that is also listening because you can listen what are you saying am i right? talking of the point that do i listen to what other says ?i will say yes if they are talking sense and if it really interest me otherwise i listen to my heart and vanish from that place
1 person likes this
@CarmenA (129)
• United States
5 Mar 10
I feel that I am a real, and good listener. Whenever someone is talking to me, I give them my full attention. If it is important to them, and they feel that I am worthy wnough to hear about what's going on in their lives, then I feel honored to listen. Even though sometimes, the person doesn't listen to me as well. When someone doesn't listen to me, it hurts my feelings because it makes me feel as if what I have to say doesn't matter or, depending on the person, that I am not important to them. It makes me feel proud to have that person in my life everytime I have the opportunity to listen to what they have to say, no matter what it is. Especially if it is someone whom I am close to.
• Romania
5 Mar 10
I think of myself as a really good listener. I always listen until the speaker finishes his sentence. But I really hate it when people don't really listen to me. While I am talking they listen to something else and that is really annoying to me!
@anamol (1)
5 Mar 10
I think its depends on what kind of person you are talking with....like teachers lecture its boring.......so i am not a good listener...
1 person likes this
@richauni (108)
• India
5 Mar 10
i think yes because firstly we listen anything and then give the reply of the things so according to me i am good listener.
1 person likes this
• India
5 Mar 10
I think it depends upon the situation and the credence involves in it,its not that one keep on listening to everything what all is happening,where there is matter of ones life,or ones decesions,one way of life onE becomes a listner and that only who are worthy for it,and its the same whosoever listens or from whom you listen you also want to devulge out your intrinsic,but then one grasps the points from each other and move on,its not that in this event the group start fighting with each other prove one superiority,I listen to many say to many but again cling with my own.what do you say it happens with everybody?Dicuss listen with whom you feel worthy and taking the cream go ahead.we may be good or bad listener,depends upon the situations.
• Philippines
5 Mar 10
it depends to the people. like if they talk none sense thing then i would rather interrupt and change to another topic. i can lend my all ears to my friends if they feel so sad and they want to just express it out. sometimes i cant interrupt them coz i cant relate to them so i just say ok and yes just for them to feel that im listening though i know its wrong
1 person likes this
@kaylayoe (295)
• United States
5 Mar 10
I guess it depends. If someone needs to talk I'm there to listen for sure! But if someone, like my boyfriend for example, is talking about something that makes no since like cars then I don't really pay attention. But if someone needs to talk and a shoulder to cry on I listen and help the best I can.
1 person likes this
@ralphido (843)
• India
6 Mar 10
no. i can't really listen to someone for more than few minutes.. my mind starts to wander off after some time. i may look right through the person who is talking to me.. ya.. i think that's why i don't have as much friends as i would like...
@linquin (11)
• United States
6 Mar 10
I know what you mean ... listening can be very difficult. I'm from Texas and we're very friendly people here. It's not uncommon to say "Hi, how ya doing?" to most everyone. Most of the time you get "Good, how are you?" But you'd better be prepared because some people think that gives them license to tell you every horrible thing that's happened to them in the last 24 hours. But the truth is that I don't want to hear it. I usually find myself backing away from them slowly saying something like "Oh, that's too bad." The truth is I'm selective about what I want to listen to and what I want to hear ... just like listening to music. There are some stations I don't tune my radio to because they assault my ears. Some people assault my ears, so I tune them out. So what does that make me? A person with no compassion? I don't think so. There used to be this guy who lived in my apartment building who always wanted to tell me his troubles and he would often cry. I listened at first and felt really bad for him. However it got to the point that every time he saw me he would have some sob story to tell me ... either a new one or the same one he told me before. So I started avoiding him and then I would feel bad about myself for not being friendly to him. So I guess I only want to hear what I want to hear. And yes, there are certain body signals that most of us can pick up on when we listen. But apparently those people with all the negative stories don't possess the ability to pick up on those signals from the listener whenever they start to speak. Otherwise they would shut up when they see my eyes glaze over. I see it in others whenever I start to speak about something a person doesn't want to hear about, and that's my cue to change the subject. So before your eyes glaze over, I'm going to shut up.
• China
6 Mar 10
I think I am good listener. I like listening. When I talk to my friends, i always listen to him, of course I say my opinion, but I prefer to listen. I think I can got some information from him, if I always talk, I might lose some important information that he wanted to say. And I also like to talk with senior citizens, they have many experience, I think if I talk with them, I can learn a lot of things from them. Talk about My own opinion is important, though. Be a good listener is more important.
@nangisha (3504)
• Indonesia
6 Mar 10
I think I am not a good listener, I am patience to hear my problem that my friend had and feel sympathy for them. but sometime when I have my own problem, and I need time alone, I don't wanna they come with their problem when I am in bad mood.
• India
6 Mar 10
Hmmm....you actually have a very good question... My answer to this would be , If the other person is saying something and the topic is related to something that interest me, then yes I am listening. But if I am just there hearing him the everything that he says/ said will be out as soon as I turn my back. About the Voice , I think I am like that, with a voice that keeps talking and thinking aloud inside my mind.