Up to 80% of our waking day is spent communicating in some way, and 45% of that involves listening to other people. Yet, it is estimated that we retain only 25% of any given conversation.
To make matters worse, we forget nearly 50% of what little was retained within eight hours. Some of this forgetfulness can be attributed to the way our brains process information. But the larger fact remains: Most of us are really bad at listening.
The good news is that being a good listener is a skill that can be learned. We can support one another by creating space where those we care about can voice fears and concerns, brainstorm ideas and set new goals, helping each other throughout our journey of growth, discovery and healthy longevity. On a larger level, with a little training, we can listen for what motivates and lights up the people around us —their passions, interests and skills, and utilize those talents to build strong social connections and an inclusive community. Imagine the possibilities of a community where everyone involved is bringing their best selves to work and life on a daily basis and making valuable contributions to the whole. The benefits of this balanced ecosystem all begin with learning how to listen, listening to truly understand.
Four Tips for Better Listening
The beauty of listening is that you don’t have to acquire special credentials to “qualify” to be a good listener. Just start practicing these four basic tips today.
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