Absorbed Listening (AL)

By Ashutosh Karnatak

Listening to the inner voice – trusting the inner voice – is one of the most important lessons of leadership."                                
                                                                        -Warren Bennis

It has been observed that most of the inter/intra problems are due to improper communication. Most of us also suffer from this menace because we do not hear others properly. It may be our ego or mental preoccupation that hinders absorption of the communication inside the mind. Generally we hear do not listen. Most of the conflicts /confusions/difference in opinions is due to improper listening. Due to mental prejudices, notions and convictions, closed mind, perceptions etc we do not allow words to flow deeply into our mind Therefore it is even more necessary to develop capability of listening. Most of our homes, our organization, our society, and us are victim of this bad listening capability. Therefore, this subject needs a thorough analysis.
1) Difference between Hearings and listening is as under:

a) Hearing: It is passive form of listening. In this, one hears the words of speaker and emotionally involved .Its an outward approach having transfer of words from one to another without nay emotion to it as receiver is passive. One receives partial conversation only and only that text goes inside the mind which is of interest or which you like to hear. In hearing process, context is retained in the mind or memory to a very less extent.

b) Listening: It is hearing when you hear all words. Here combination of ear and heart is used. It confirms no difference in understanding between sayer and listener. It’s an inward approach, wherein mind and heart both are used. It is absorbing of the words inside the body. One is able to decode the same at the time of requirement. For students it is very important – whenever they are in the class, they only hear. In case one starts listening then he would not take much of time to understand the subject. For this one can not be made fully responsible, but his mental engagement, prejudices are responsible. Need is the develop habit of absorbed listening. Similarly, in office, most of the officer has a habit of speaking in between when another person is explaining. It may be due to paucity of time or mental engagement, but he is not being listened properly. In fact, in this process ear, hear and mind all works in tandem. Real we use of ears can be had only when we have habit of listening.

Knowing the difference, it is clear that where we stand:

  • Do you hear or listen.

2)Advantage of Listening:

  • Ease in taking decision: its biggest advantage in taking decision cannot be overlooked. Listening enables you to understand various facts of the issue and thus helps in taking decision. Without having full information our decision may not be so effective or good.

  • Enhances concentration: Absorbed listening has its inherent advantages. It enhances concentration ability. Visualize the process of listening. You are listening to other person and having mental communication with him. You are allowing all his thoughts to penetrate into your mind.

  • Avoids possible danger: It protects from possible danger of misunderstanding the subject. It has been reported that Astonaught Kalpana Chawla, who died in the accident of Columbia Space Shuttle of, had bright out the issue of safety to the panel of NASA, but nobody listened and consequence is known to all.

  • Development of visionary attitude: Absorbed listening develops visionary attitude, as after listening the subject you are able to plan not only the response but also future course of action because mental computer gets all the feed to process the data and works out a plan.

  • Develops capability of distinction: Listening enables to person in development of making distinction in right and wrong.

  • Reduces spot – reaction: The best time to hold your tongue is the time you feel you must say some thing or bust”- Josh Billing

In fact whenever we are engaged in some conversation, we are not actually listening to the person, but what for a chance to speak /react out and mentally prepare sentences and also the vocabulary to be used. 

Following advantages can be obtained if we shift from hearing to listening: 

  • You are able to understand other in better manner: It is the real advantage of absorbed listening. By virtue of this, one able to understand not only the words but also the emotion with the text attached intrinsically with it. Here one thing is important to know to until one understand the real text, it becomes difficult to understand the subject and due to improper understanding it becomes difficult to understand the speaker.

  • It enables one to have better relationship with others: When one understand the other in better manner, it paves the way for better relationship. In addition, it has got tremendous impact on total relationship by enhance on confidence level with each other. Moreover, as soon as this sort of relationship develops, one starts sensing also on the understanding of other.

  • It’s an healing effect: Oh! It is one of the advantages, which accrue out of absorbed listening .In fact, in this world there are very few who listens to others. Every time we ourselves are ready to speak out on any subject irrespective of the fact that we have knowledge or not. It has been experienced by author that, if you pay heed to others, they by venting their feelings, they feel relaxed, which have tremendous healing effect.

  • Listening enhances concentration: As you start listening, your concentration capability also enhances because during the conversation you are very engrossed with the speaker and your all-mental faculties are unidirectional to listen the speaker, thus your concentration enhances.

It has been experienced that people generally say that at this age, it is difficult to change ourselves and these sorts of articles are only matter of preaching. It has been experienced that improvement: 

  • Improvement has no limit.
  • No age is for this.
  • Only requirement is to have a open mind.
  • Improvement needs open mind.

SO with above preface in mind , if you have open mind and readiness to receive some techniques as illustrated below , then read further ……

3) Techniques for developing skill for Absorbed Listening(AL):

1) Have proper body language: The first requirement is to have proper body language. It is worth understanding that whenever some body is speaking to you, he has not come out of love (barring some cases), but wants to communicate you on some subject and seeks your attention. It has been seen that when somebody comes to you – you don’t pay attention to him. It has following demerits :

         •  Unknowingly you are insulting the speaker.
         Depriving you to have proper knowledge on the issue, this in turn makes difficulty in decision-making.

Therefore, whenever one speaks to you. Change you body language with a view that you are fully  attentive to the subject, and in case you are busy better advise him to speak later rather to have a incomplete and incorrect communication . Full attention is required to be given to the speaker, make use of your ears and during the conversation if any phone call comes ask the caller to call later. Similarly if a student is in class, his body language should be of total attention, then only lesson taught by the class teacher shall be able to penetrate inside the mind.

2) Listen attentively each word: Listening is an art, which is skilled after a long practice and which is not taught in any class. Incidentally, it is required most of the time. Thus, whenever some one is in conversation with you had better listen to his words care fully along with the tone attached with this .some time for the same words different tones have different meaning. By paying attention, the time to find out the real meaning of the communication later. Therefore, it is better to listen attentively each word. 

3) Leave all the works before giving hearing to someone: It is an essential gradient for absorbed listening .Whenever, somebody come for telling something. Leave all the works and pay focused attention to him. It would enable you to understand the subject. 

4) Switching technique: It is a unique technique.Fictitiously place switches around your forehead like :

  • Switch for study
  • Switch for play
  • Switch for listening
  • Etc etc

Now when you are in listening mode then switch off al other switches and keep open switch for listening. It’s a psychological exercise but helps. It is basically auto-suggestion to the mind that you are not engaged in other activities and only focusing towards listening. Practice the technique it helps.

5) Create Friendly atmosphere: It is essential for the receiver of any communication to develop a friendly atmosphere, so that the speaker is able fell comfortable while speaking. Most of the time we do not get requisite information as other has inhibition during conversation due to unfriendly atmosphere. Therefore, make the speaker comfortable and give a friendly atmosphere enabling proper communication. 

6) Meditation: Listen to everything all the time and remind yourself when you are not listening – it is one of the panaceas for better listening. Mind and heart are two major constituents of the body who have major role in life. They govern all the actions. Therefore, for absorbed listening (AL) meditation is helpful. It helps in cleansing of mind, which in turn reduces anxiety, cobwebs, prejudices of mind which restraints in being a good listener.  

Based on the above, you can try above techniques and develop yourself as an” Absorbed Listener (AL)”                                                                  

                                     Golden Rules

Lorenz's Law of Mechanical Repair:
After your hands become coated with grease, your nose will begin to itch.

Anthony's Law of the Workshop:
Any tool, when dropped, will roll to the least accessible corner.

Kovac's Conundrum:
When you dial a wrong number, you never get an engaged one.

Cannon's Karmic Law:
If you tell the boss you were late for work because you had a flat tire, the next morning you will have a flat tire.

O’Brien’s Variation Law:
If you change queues, the one you have left will start to move faster than the one you are in now.

When the body is immersed in water, the telephone rings.

The probability of meeting someone you know increases when you are with someone you do not want to be seen with.

When you try to prove to someone that a machine will not work, it will.

The severity of the itch is inversely proportional to the reach. BREDA'S RULE
At any event, the people whose seats are furthest from the aisle arrive last.

As soon as you sit down to a cup of hot coffee, your boss will ask you to do something which will last until the coffee is cold.

You remember you have to mail a letter only when you're near the.

Future Forecast: December 2005

Auspicious Days: 1,5,13,14,19,20,25,28,29 December 05

Aggression in speech shall be detrimental for progress; Leadership related issues shall fetch you success; Help shall be extended from life partner; Good news shall be received from children's front; Financial position shall also improve; Last month of th year shall give you happiness .

Ling journeys are indicated; luck shall be helpful in many activities; Life partner shall find trouble in decisions making; Internal Mental deliberation shall be troublesome; One of the child shall lose his health; Fluctuating financial position shall be experienced ;efforts for stabilization shall be done .

Avoid taking important decision due to mental instability; Better to maintain sweetness in speech; Differences with life partner shall be a cause of concern; Moderate condition shall prevail because of children; Constraints hall prevail in financial position; Avoid unnecessary expenditures.

Less progress in different works shall be noticed ;Impediments are likely to come ;Leadership related works shall be done; Issues related to life partner shall remain normal; Long journeys are indicate; Progress on account of children is indicate; Sudden spurt of money is indicated; Avoid taking loan etc.

Status in society shall enhance; efforts for higher education shall be done; Life partner shall be a cause of concern; Development works pertaining to children shall be done; Use of vehicle to be done with caution; Inflow of money is indicated from property .

Mental disturbance shall prevail, which may cause difficulty in taking proper decision; Blood related trouble may be encountered; Mental duality shall prevail with life partner; Progress is indicated on account of children; Sale o property is indicated ; Financial status shall remain normal.

Enhancement of prestige within society and friends ;Professional ups and downs shall be experienced ;Aggressive mood of life partner shall be a cause of concern; Progress is indicated on account of children ,which will give you pride; Fluctuations are indicated in financial arena – avoid unnecessary expenditures.

Mental disturbance shall be cause of concern at the later part of the month; Unfortunate moments shall be cause of concern; Health of children shall not good and their progress will also not be up to mark; Finacial position shall improve.

Social prestige shall enhance due to good deeds and better thinking; Leadership related jobs shall be done; Differences will happen with life partner and health shall not be up to mark; Progress by children shall give you pride ; Financial position shall improve.

Luxurious means shall be explored for life; Health shall be normal; Professional advancements are indicated; eye related troubles might happen; Difference of opinion shall be with life partner; General happiness shall be there because of children; financial turmoil may be there.

Sudden imbalance shall be observed in health; Fortune shall help in general; Help form life partner shall be helpful in progress; Children shall also excel in their field; Dilemma shall be there in financial matters, however year-end shall be favorable.

Mental disturbance shall restraint you to take decision ; Professional advancements shall be there on account of superiors or associates ; Although harmonious atmosphere shall be there in home but so of issues may raise differences; Children part shall be normal; Financial position shall not trouble you in the year end .

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