Listening

Discussion in 'General Martial Arts Talk' started by jks9199, Jun 17, 2020.

  1. jks9199

    jks9199 Administrator Staff Member

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    It seems to me that a lot of things could be made a whole lot better if people would just listen.

    The thing is... Listening is hard. Like really, really hard. It takes discipline. It takes being willing to admit that other people in the world actually have opinions, knowledge, and even real existence. (Because, believe it or not, most of us don’t really know if other’s really exist, or are just figments of our imagination... Are you really here, reading this, if I’m not thinking of you?)
    So what is listening, and why is it so hard? Hearing is easy; sound waves bounce against your eardrums and you perceive sounds. That’s hearing. Listening is more; it’s taking the sounds, and assigning actual meaning to them. And most people only do this halfway. They “listen” to answer. They “listen” to reinforce what they already believe or think. And that causes problems... Ever listen to people arguing, and suddenly realize that they’re actually both saying the same thing -- but they’re so locked into getting their say in that neither is aware of it? How many problems does that cause -- where there’s not really a problem.
    We can parrot the steps of Active Listening, even coach other people in it... but it doesn’t matter if we aren’t really listening to what they’re saying, and just using Active Listening as a tactic. We have to be quiet, and listen. Not try to figure out how to respond or how what they’re saying fits into whatever narrative we have running. Actually LISTEN to find out what they’re saying. Doing this is incredibly hard for most people. (Do it right, consistently, and it’s a superpower... but that’s another thing.) If you’re not sure you got it... tell them what you think they said, and then let them correct you. That’s even harder, it takes not only admitting you might have been wrong, but letting someone else tell you that you were wrong. Then lather, rinse, repeat... until you’re both sure that the actual message was received.
    I think, if we all could make as little as a 10% effort to do this, we would greatly improve the world. Because we’d start to find out that the other person really is real... and we’d even maybe get past primed narratives pumped at us in so many loud and insistent channels, and get to place where people are actually communicating... And how can that not make things better?
     
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  2. dvcochran

    dvcochran Grandmaster

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    Fully agree.
    Are you familiar with the 'rule of 5'? The average person needs to hear the same information presented in 5 different ways to really process it. It can happen with less occurrences but not often. People who can do it more regularly are very gifted in the art of comprehension.
    If you look for it you will find it built into most quality presentations. It is a very effective tool, although when used poorly (such as repeating the same thing, the same way over and over) it can be quite annoying.
     
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  3. _Simon_

    _Simon_ Senior Master

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    Yesss... well said!

    And it really IS hard... like you say, we're often listening just to answer and reinforce our narrative/perception. Primed and just really waiting around until we can get our say in.

    I've really really tried applying it to myself, especially on this forum, and it is trickier for some than others.. :s. Making sure I'm not just trying to change someone's mind but actually see where they're coming from. And to realise that we just both may not have the same approach, motivation or intention regarding the subject, so that it's actually fine if we have a different understanding.
     
  4. Steve

    Steve Mostly Harmless

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    Always a struggle, but one worth the effort. Trust plays a huge role in this, as well. People don't tend to listen well to folks they don't trust. This forum has some trust issues. Address those and some of the listening issues will sort themselves out.
    What?
    No we're not.
    Nope.
    Until...
    NO!
    CAN GET OUR SAY IN! (ha, I said it first!)
    ;)
     
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  5. Rat

    Rat Master Black Belt

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    I dont want to be that guy, but isnt it reading? :p
     
  6. KenpoMaster805

    KenpoMaster805 Black Belt

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    Its always good to listen and pay attention so when somebody explained something youll get it123
     

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