I take for granted the remarkable ability I have to listen. Sound is all around me and my brain processes sound waves in an automatic way a good chunk of the time. But am I really listening?
Julian Treasure has studied sound and its impact on humans for decades. He tells us that we are "losing our listening". Julian brought to my attention how some technologies give us the ability to "self-broadcast", which obviously does not receive sound and meaning, only produces it. The studies he quotes show that we retain only 25% of what we listen to. He also mentions how media outlets work very hard for our attention, and contribute to our tuning out the quiet and the meek. And this, he says, is a bad thing.
As Julian states, "Conscious listening creates understanding". Without listening, without understanding, we are soon left to a brutish, survival of the fittest scenario. I was so struck with the truth of that statement in my own life. How many arguments with my husband could I have avoided if I were making enough deliberate space to understand what he was trying to tell me? What if I took the time and mental effort to consciously listen to that associate who always annoys me? What would happen if I understood more often, and self-broadcasted less? Well, something good. Something meaningful.
Julian goes on to teach five ways that we can practice conscious listening to train ourselves to be better listeners and extract more meaning out of sound. Take a look, and a listen, and see how this concept of consciously listening can help Raise The Good in your life, family, and world.
Additional note: Julian shows us a slide depicting the violence and shame that comes from a lack of listening and understanding. You may want to preview this almost 8 minute video to be sure that it is suitable for your children, or other audience. I personally thought that it was a very powerful demonstration and the slide lasted only a few seconds, but please make your own decision about its appropriateness.
Community Question: Has there been a time in your life when listening made all the difference?
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