Flickr image

OUR VIEW: Listening is a skill worth mastering

If you cherish good listening, be a good listener. It’s a two-way street

In this jacked-up, gotta-go world of ours, we periodically need to be reminded about the preternatural importance of being a good listener.

This week’s dose of sound wisdom is administered by three grandmothers who lend a listening ear in their volunteer work with hospice patients nearing the end of their lives.

Being a good listener means shelving your own internal chatter to focus your attention on someone else. This is not always easy, with so many things screaming for our undivided concentration.

We demand such focus from our spouses, children, friends and co-workers. And politicians? Don’t get us started…

READ ALSO OUR VIEW: Move on? Not quite yet, Doug

Yet, how often do we find ourselves lamenting, “If only I listened?” How often is it we who are not paying attention?

It no doubt drives everyone nuts just knowing, when you’re saying something, that the person who should be listening to you is instead so wrapped up in what they’re going to say next, that all they’re hearing is “mwa mwa mwa,” like that teacher’s voice in Charlie Brown cartoons.

But how often are we guilty of this too?

We grow perturbed when people’s eyes glaze over – you know their thoughts are worlds away from what you’re trying to express.

But how often is it our minds that wander, at the expense of others?

When you listen, you learn. Learn the importance of sharing time, energy, and showing others that you give a whit. And lots of other important stuff, too.

The flip side of the coin, of course, is this: If you have nothing to say, don’t babble.

The practise of good listening, as rare as it is today, is something that should never be squandered on banal chatter.

If you cherish good listening, be a good listener. It’s a two-way street.

Black Press

Editorials

Just Posted

Vancouver Island sisters surprised to find themselves reunited at seniors care home after years apart

Eden Gardens Nanaimo staff member noticed new care home resident’s resemblance to another resident

Victoria Police see new trends in calls due to COVID-19

Police link jump in domestic, mental health calls to pandemic

PQBeat Podcast: Talking cars with Philip Wolf and Peter McCully

Listen: Chat includes best and worst vehicles, dream rides and more

PHOTOS: Victoria photographer documents families in isolation with the Front Door Project

Using a longer lens, Chelsea Smith is able to take family portraits from across the street

Vancouver Islanders step up to mask the response to COVID-19

Amateurs and professionals alike are sewing masks to stave off expected shortages

Speed, alcohol not ruled out as factors in crash that left one person dead

Police watchdog, Campbell River Major Crimes Unit are investigating

Evening world update: U.S. restrictions extended 30 days; NY deaths near 1,000

Comprehensive world update, with the latest developments in the COVID-19 crisis

Duncan man asks community to donate RVs to essential workers in need of quarantine

Ryan Oakley creates a Facebook group to help coordinate the effort

B.C. Ferries passengers staying away, as asked, during COVID-19 pandemic

Ferry corporation says ridership down 70-80 per cent over the last week and a half

‘It’s up to us: Recently-returned B.C. couple urges Canadians to take COVID-19 seriously

Garrett Kucher and Tory Apostoliuk make it home after almost a week of lockdown in Spain

‘Nothing concrete’: Tenants, landlords lack details after B.C. unveils COVID-19 rental aid

Single mom in Golden says she’s already going to the food bank after being laid off

Canada will make sure masks sent by China meet quality standards: Trudeau

Chinese Embassy tweeted that China was sending 30,000 medical masks along with gowns, gloves and goggles

B.C. issues guidelines about distancing, reusable bags to grocery stores amid COVID-19

Hand sanitizer and markers to keep lines two metres are apart are needed, province says

Most Read