When you listen to another person speak, really listen. When you listen, seek to focus your attention not on your own familiar thoughts, but on the new thoughts being presented to you.
Effective listening is difficult, demanding effort. It is very much worth the effort.
When you listen well, you can gain great experience and wisdom quickly, in concentrated form. Listening can transfer great swaths of knowledge from another person’s mind into your own.
Give your mind plenty of opportunities to wander, but not while you’re listening. The opportunity of listening is too valuable to waste.
Those who speak to you are offering to share unique perspectives, thoughts, experiences with you. Graciously accept the offer, and don’t dilute its value by spending the whole time thinking of what you’re going to say in reply.
When you listen, remember to listen with gratitude, respect, and attention. Put forth the effort to listen well, and bring new value into your life that will always be yours.
— Ralph Marston