Nov 24, 2006
Seek first to Understand...
-- from Stephen Covey's 7 Habits of Highly Effective People
I include this today because I've noticed this week that I need a reminder.
On one occasion, I was meeting with several people (including me) who were all "trying to be understood" -- something Covey calls "the dialogue of the deaf". On another occasion, I launched into commentary and advice while the person I was with still getting started with her story.
For me, what de-rails the listening? Many things, of course: impatience, arrogance, lack of consideration, fear, forgetfulness... It's hard for me to be "on guard" against those at all times, but maybe it's easier instead to be focused on what I do want instead of what I'm trying to avoid. Especially if I can say what I want in simple way: to truly be helpful (when I'm working as a consultant) or to truly hear my friend (when I'm listening to someone close).
So, in any case. Here's the blog reminder to myself. And happy day-after-Thanksgiving to you!