Hello, is Anyone Listening?

Ever get the feeling that everyone is talking, texting, running, and no one is listening?

When I was a kid, my parents would scold me if I interrupted someone before they finished talking. I’m noticing that fewer and fewer people are listening these days. It’s almost like they just want to hear themselves talk. (I guess that sounds kinda accusatory.) Maybe they have some reason, like a fear of NOT being heard, who knows. But I’ve had many conversations where my attempts to be a good listener have ended in a one way conversation where the other person walked away smiling, and I stood there with my jaw hanging open.

Anyone else notice this?

 

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26 thoughts on “Hello, is Anyone Listening?

    1. We can hope, right? Maybe next time I should just text the person standing next to me! LOL. Then maybe they will pay attention.

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    1. It’s eye contact that’s so important. You can’t feel like you have been heard until the other person looks you in the eye. My rooster gives good advice, I find, so I understand that!

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  1. Happens to me all the time with some people. Being soft-spoken, unless excited about the topic, I get talked over all the time. I’ve taken the approach of walking away and announcing that the other person just missed out on an interesting discussion that they will spend the rest of their lives wondering about.

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  2. Yes.

    It almost seems like the more we talk, the less that is said, and heard. Maybe people who talk incessantly do that because they don’t feel they are listened to? Or maybe some are not able to speak from the heart?
    Maybe we are slowly losing the skill and depth of language necessary to feel as if we did say anything and so we chatter on.

    Good post. I definitely feel that for all of the ways we now have to communicate, we’re not necessarily any better at it. 🙂

    Debra

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    1. It bothers me. Especially when I see my daughter getting ignored. She has important ideas too, but because she isn’t pushy, she gets dismissed. So sad.

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  3. Olivia, have you read the book Quiet by Susan Cain? Her book really helped me to understand how we go to this point of all talk and no listening. Some of it is current technology, but some of it goes back a long way, to advertizing in the 1900s and the shift from valuing character to valuing personality. Our society does place a high value on who can talk the loudest and longest. She has a chapter (or two) on how to help your kids (whether they be introverts, extroverts or somewhere in-between) navigate this rather loud and ignorant society.

    And this happens to me and my husband all the time at work. We’re both soft-spoken and thus easily talked over. The few times I’ve tried being “pushy,” people looked at me as if I just grew another head, so nowadays, I just accept my situation, sit back, and think about other things. Yes, sometimes I don’t even bother to follow the discussion. If I’m in a meeting, I can fake writing notes and instead write for me. There are some advantages to no one listening 😉

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    1. …valuing character to valuing personality… You are so right. I think this hits the nail on the head. Rude people get all the attention, and get their ideas heard, and those trying to ‘love their neighbor’ get pushed around, or even outright dismissed. No, I have not heard of that book. Thanks for letting me know about it!

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  4. Listening is a fine art that seems to be disappearing. I am optimistic that one day we will return to real conversation, person-to-person, one speaking and one listening. Phones do get boring after a bit. Great post!

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  5. It was nice to ‘see’ you over in Beetley. I hope that all is well, and you are having some success.
    As for listening, it seems that everyone tries too hard to get out what they are thinking these days, ignoring the fact that someone is already talking. This happens in TV interviews, news programmes, and in many films too. So, no good example being set in the media, and many parents presumably not engaging.
    Best wishes as always, Pete.

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