Listening is an art

When we listen to something, we are usually engaged in passive listening—we anticipate our brains to pick up on the key aspects and retain them later.

However, active listening is a critical ability for effective communication. It takes practice to become a better listener, but it will improve your ability to connect with others and your capacity to retain knowledge.

Effective Listening Skills - A crucial aspect of effective communication

Communication is not always what you communicate, and it also comprises what you are communicating. In other words, communication is not alone speaking, and it also involves listening. It is said that you don’t learn much when you speak; you learn when you listen. Great achievers have been great listeners.

But listening to others is not an easy task. Patience is a key element here. If you don’t want to listen to something or from someone, you must exercise patience to continue listening. When you start listening, then you also get listened to. When you get listened to, you consider it a bit of respect and feel good. In the same vein, you must extend this courtesy to others by listening to them.

Reasons Why Effective Listening Is Important

An attentive listening benefit you as you may get lots of useful information while listening to others. When a presenter is speaking, he regularly looks at listeners to gauge their level of attention and interest. He tries several gimmicks to get them to listen to him as he knows that only the audience’s patient and participatory listening would bear results. The audience members also show their involvement by making transitory eye contact with the speaker, gesticulating specifically to demonstrate receptiveness, and partaking in the event by expressing different mannerisms.

Effective communication comprises 2 components:


listening to others

Many individuals overlook the second one. Many people are adept at speaking yet fall short when hearing their thoughts and feelings. Listening can be quite difficult. It comes naturally to very few people, so you must deliberate to progress. Why is it worthwhile to make the extra effort to listen? The following are the reasons why listening is an art:

Fosters trust

When you try to listen to another person, they will notice your attention. They can know you care about what they’re saying. This increases their comfort level with you and their willingness to share. If you were simply listening half-heartedly, avoiding eye contact, or gazing at your phone, the other person would be less inclined to waste their breath. They will have little faith in your ability to respect their opinions and feelings.

Minimizes misconceptions

Misunderstandings are a frequent result of ineffective communication. When people are not paying attention to one another, it is quite easy to mishear or misinterpret something. While most misunderstandings are minor, others can have serious implications. For instance, if someone does not listen when a friend discloses that they have a food allergy, offering them a dish containing a harmful ingredient could be lethal.

Assists in resolving conflict

Inadequate listening abilities cause numerous disagreements. Apart from occasionally generating misconceptions, poor listening irritates persons engaged in critical conversations. People desire to be respected, which is inextricably linked to being heard. You do not have to agree, but merely trying to hear another point of view helps keep the situation peaceful. When everyone feels secure and relaxed, it becomes simpler to work through uncomfortable circumstances without devolving into conflict.

Fosters empathy

While humans are inherently empathic, we all have prejudices and assumptions based on our upbringing and experiences. When speaking with people from diverse backgrounds and experiences, it’s natural to fall back on preconceived preconceptions. Rather than assuming, you can commit to listening. When you hear directly from a source, you better know their point of view, which is critical for developing empathy.

Strengthens relationships

Relationship specialists often emphasize the need for listening. Ineffective communication is at the root of much conflict and grief in romantic relationships. By listening to one another, you establish a judgment-free environment. This may require considerable practice since many troubled couples are accustomed to interrupting and speaking over one another. A trained couple’s therapist can provide listening activities to help structure the process.

Strengthens business partnerships


If your job requires you to engage with people, you understand critical communication. Conflicts and misunderstandings can ruin projects and tarnish firms’ reputations. By committing to improving your listening skills, you may develop excellent relationships with coworkers and clients. People will regard you with admiration and be willing to cooperate with you.

Development of friendships

Listening enhances not only sexual and business connections but also friendships. If you’re feeling disconnected from old friends or having difficulty connecting with new ones, improving your listening skills could be a game-changer. The benefits of listening — more trust, fewer misunderstandings, and increased empathy – are particularly beneficial in friendships. It is worthwhile to try. Increased friendships are associated with improved physical and mental health!

More productive

Whether at business or school, listening is critical to success. Individuals who listen well are more likely to retain knowledge, comprehend what is being asked, and ask the appropriate questions. This is a valuable skill to have when working on group projects or attending meetings. Many individuals believe that they must frequently speak to contribute, although listening is likely more important. When everyone listens to one another, there are fewer miscommunications. This saves time for everyone.

Acquisition of new languages

When you’re learning a new language, you’re almost certainly going to practice speaking quite a bit. Listening is just as critical, although it is frequently overlooked. Why? It’s exhausting for many people – and it is – but that’s because it’s exercising your brain. Given that we spend approximately 55% of our time listening rather than speaking or writing, hearing the language you wish to learn is critical to mastering it. Audiobooks, music, and films are all excellent options.

Develop leadership abilities

If you want to improve as a leader, you need to improve as a listener. Active listening enables you to connect your team’s ideas, hear alternative perspectives, and avoid misunderstandings. A good team leader ensures that each member feels valued, making each member feel heard. If you’ve always believed that successful leaders are those who communicate effectively, you’re only half right. Additionally, they are excellent listeners.



Perfect listening can be exhibited by smiling, frowning, nodding, making varied facial expressions, making different gestures, or showing subtle body movements. Sometimes you half-speak some syllables in a very low pitch to show that you are all the ears. When the speaker is expecting you to speak, by speaking, then you confirm that you were listening to him appropriately and you have followed his speech right through.

Some of the greatest leaders of our generation have mastered the skill of listening. The art of listening may elevate not just your leadership ability but also your success and charisma, all of which contribute to the development of a healthy culture and peak performance.

So, listening to something or someone is a combination of different personality traits. It’s an art and can be developed by a purposeful practice.

Author : Saurabh Mishra

Publishing Date : 07 January, 2022