People might be thinking to themselves: what is active listening? Is active listening even a thing? Well, there is no special connotation associated with the phrase “active listening”. Active listening simply means that an individual is intently listening to another individual.
In active listening, the listening individual is fully concentrating on what the other individual is saying and showing to the speaker that he or she is fully engaged in the conversation. Factors include eye contact, nodding your head, and reciprocation to the recipient. Through these constituents, the recipient will feel fully appreciated and present in the conversation.
So, what is the effect of active listening? There are various benefits to conversation when an individual is actively listening. First off, the recipient – the person who is speaking – feels much more comfortable. The speaker doesn’t feel like he or she is boring the listener with their topic.
Secondly, active listening can help build relationships and avoid misunderstandings. By actively listening, you are establishing a mood of trust and honesty. The speaker is more likely to openly speak if he or she knows that the listener is sympathetic and understanding. By establishing that mood, you are slowly but surely building a strong relationship. Also, in terms of improving productivity, the listener will retain more information due to their active listening. This may become useful in a school or working environment. Therefore, they will be able to utilize their knowledge more efficiently.
In our generation, depression has been a big issue. When therapists learn how to speak with the mentally ill, active listening is also used, and applied constantly. A therapist always actively listens to the mentally ill client. Most importantly, gaining active listening skills will help you talk to others sincerely about heavy topics. If a friend or family member is going through depression, active listening is vital to the conversation. Active listening is not only important in being a doctor or a therapist, but it is also a day to day skill that can be used to help your companions.
Edward Hong, a member of the KYCC clinical service, states that active listening can significantly improve the wellbeing of a depressed person. “Just being there for someone will automatically lift their spirits up. They know that they can rely on someone and have a decent conversation with them.”
Active listening should always be a skill that you possess. It is always important to help others and enable them to not be apprehensive about their problems. Develop the skill of active listening – it will help in your social endeavors.
Larchmont Charter School CA, LA