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I don’t usually struggle for things to write about in my blog. Often I’m out for a walk with the dog or, perhaps, reading a book or listening to the radio and something I see, read or hear inspires me.
Today, I feel like writing something but no particular subject springs to mind. I have a lot of new projects on the go and am just about to complete one project which I’ve been working on for some time so there’s a lot going on in my head but nothing suitable for a blog post at this stage! I will write about my completed project soon and the new ones in due course.
So, if I don’t have anything in particular that I want to say what should I do? The answer is kind of obvious…..I SHOULD LISTEN!
Active listening is a great skill and can take years to master. Sometimes we think we’re listening but are we really?
We can all literally hear the same words being spoken but we interpret them via our filtering systems which have developed over many years and which are influenced by our personal beliefs, values and experiences.
This is why active listening is a skill involving having “conversations that count” (a term I’ve heard a lot in my APEC Advanced coaching course, and which I love and try my best to apply!). Conversations that count involve staying quiet and allowing the other person to speak, reflecting back to check understanding, asking open questions to dig deeper and gain more understanding, being aware of congruence i.e. are body language and spoken language in tune with each other. Listening is as much an art as a science.
So today I plan to JUST LISTEN and see what the day brings. I will mindfully listen to the wind and the birds singing whilst out for my walk, I will listen to words and music on the radio but turn it off when I’m occupied doing something else and this evening I will actively listen during a session with my mindset support group.
What are YOU listening to today?