Listening: How To Be Great
“It takes a great man to be a good listener.” – Calvin Coolidge
Everyone wants to talk, to speak, to share and communicate – to be heard.
To be heard is to be significant and everyone needs significance. (They don’t want it, or think it would be nice to have… they need it.)
To truly listen, one has to put aside the needs of the Ego and be whole and present. To be needless and giving of time and attention.
So, to listen to someone, to truly be present when they are communicating and really hear them is one of the greatest skills. And it’s one of the hardest things to do.
Listening to someone – not merely formulating your response as you wait for them to stop speaking – is truly a gift.
It is a rare and precious acknowledgment of someone’s humanity. It’s like giving air to their soul.
People, on a deep and profound level, know when they’ve been listened to and the best way to impact someone is make sure that they know they’ve truly been heard.
And it’s often not something you actively do, it’s the calm stillness within you that only comes from being present to someone’s words.
It’s not easy, and takes time to develop the skill, but truly great people are excellent listeners.