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EarRecall this very funny Fran Lebowitz quote? “The opposite of talking isn’t listening. The opposite of talking is waiting.”

That’s what most of us tend to do, at least some of the time–wait for our moment instead of fully giving space for someone else’s. Our content partner Divine Caroline has a great article called “Conversation Killers: How to Stop Interrupting Others.”

Here’s a snippet: “It’s so hard to quell the impulse to interject, especially when you have a relatable story or a point you don’t want to miss making. Perhaps that’s why chronic interrupting is a trait shared by so many, including some of the nicest, most caring people I know.”  

The deep sad irony being that many of us just want to be heard–not shocking in a nation of mega-talkers starved for the slowing down, silence, and receptivity true listening requires.

 Interestingly, the article parses the difference between “collaborative interrupting” and “competitive interrupting”–the former being that “Oh, me too–when I was 10…” thing we do. The latter is a more abrupt style of trying to change the conversation completely. The author, Vicki Santillano, writes: “Both prevent the other people we’re conversing with from speaking their minds freely. Both make them feel that their feelings on the matter aren’t worth as much as ours.” 

Point taken. What are some of your listening tips?

Check out the whole article on how to stop interrupting.  

 

Related Features:

Listening Tip # 1: Listening for Beauty

Listening Tip #2: Don’t Pile On

How to Speak Peace: ‘Feeding Two Birds with One Seed’ 

[Image via: http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Ear.jpg]

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