3 Minutes of Listening
The art and skill of listening is so often overlooked in our busy day-to-day. Though we hear our family, friends, partners, colleagues, and bosses throughout the day, how much do we actually listen and internalize what they say? How good of a listener are you really? If you were to rate your listening skills on a scale of 1-10, where would you fall?
Try this experiment with your partner or a friend:
Take turns being the listener and the talker for 3 minutes at a time
When it’s your turn to listen for 3 minutes, you’re not allowed to say anything. Your job is simply to focus on your partner and what they’re saying, not prepare your comment or response
How difficult is it for you to listen without talking for 3 minutes? How difficult is it for you to not have something that you would want to say every 10 seconds? What does this tell you about your listening skills? When it was your turn to speak for 3 minutes, how did it feel to be listened to without interruption for that time?
Discuss with your partner what each of you noticed in this experiment and how this may have been different from your typical interactions
This is an important lesson in just how powerful listening without interruption can feel as both the listener and the person who is sharing!