A Way of Listening

2 May

Good morning!

Somehow the sun comes out and the weather gets nicer and I immediately feel like I have less time in a day. How weird is that? Might have something to do with the hours that I spend out on the terrace, watching people. And with all the hours a day I now spend on writing my thesis, since I want to have it done at the end of this month. Yes, guess what I actually started working on it! Woooohooo! Good job with the stop postponing! Well, anyways, here are my thoughts to my new tasks:

Task 17:

This week take a different route, or travel by other means then you usually do to an everyday destination. Enjoy it.

The way I go. Well, I only have two places I visit on a regular almost every day bases. One is the university and the other one is the supermarket. My means of travelling is a nice variation of biking and going on foot. I did both already to university and it even happened once that I went by bus because my bike broke down and it was raining. So, I would say the variation aspect in that direction is already covered. Unless I can find a way to somehow fly to uni or go by boot. Since this is less likely to happen I think I should look for a different route to go to uni. Even in that I do not have that much choice. You see: our river the Maas flows right trough the middle of the city. Not that many bridges exist that make it possible to cross the Maas and I have to cross it in order to get to university. However, I will think of some ways to find a solution for this, maybe I swim across it instead of going over it ;). Changing my route to the supermarket is a lot easier. If I get real crazy I could even change the supermarket I am going to. Well, let’s see what happens there.

Task 18:

Listen actively: look at the speaker’s lips, nod to confirm and from now on regularly summarize out lout what the other person exactly means according to you.

So stop talking and start listening. Haha, okay the task does not actually say stop talking. All my friends would probably bet I would fail to stop talking already if I just had to do it for an hour. Actually my board already made that bet quite often last year, although I must say in hindsight it was probably just so I would shut up during our board meetings ;-). Well, unfortunately for all of you who wish I would stop talking, I only have to actively listen according to this task.

What struck me most about this task is that I have to look at the persons lips when I listen to someone. I do notice that I already do that sometimes but I must admit it can get pretty awkward when you keep looking at a person’s lips. I just started to get real comfortable around guys and now I have to look at their lips while talking to them, this is certainly going to be challenging. Especially if you are in a pub and the other person is standing real close because the music is loud. If a guy keeps looking at my lips in such a situation I always have the feeling he want to kiss me, although probably he just tries to understand what I am saying and that is easier when looking at someone’s mouth. Or maybe both, who knows. Anyway, this can be an interesting experiment. Let’s start to listen actively and see what happens.

Love,

Anne-Sophie

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2 Responses to “A Way of Listening”

  1. Bethany Lee May 8, 2013 at 13:46 #

    Anne-Sophie–this is my first time here and I really like the concept behind your blog and these tasks!! On this listening thing, I am training to be a yoga teacher, and over our weekend training session, we had to take a minute and a half to listen to someone speak “their truth” at that moment. It was really interesting because my entire focus was on listening to the person speaking and I was concentrating on what she said, without trying to affirm or give any response back (we were told not to do that). So, I wasn’t worried about speaking back to her or having “something” to say back to her. I found that it made me actively listen to her more, and I was surprised to find that I had more empathy for what she was saying, more compassion. It was really interesting. So try that–think only of listening and not having some “answer” to give back. It takes the pressure off.
    Bethany Lee recently posted…Weightlifting: Four Lessons It Has Taught MeMy Profile

    • Anne-Sophie Sloet van Oldruitenborgh May 9, 2013 at 20:50 #

      Hey Bethany!
      Thank you for your comment! I think you make a valid point. I actually have already heard about this method once before but I had completely forgotten about it. I will keep it in mind the next time when I am listening to a person. I even think it is much more valid then looking at the person’s lips while they are talking. Really focussing on what they are saying without needing and thinking about what to apply makes you pay attention in a different way. A very valid suggestion!

      Thank you Bethany, I look forward to hear your opinion on my upcoming tasks as well!