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The beautiful Art of Listening

Active listening involves attentively listening and engaging with someone while withholding judgment or advice.

Hello everyone. I am here with another interesting topic by which I was inspired during one of my patient interviews.

I had a new patient who came in with her husband. She looked anxious from the very start and both her and her husband appeared extremely irritable. They were both looking down as I entered the room. I started my interview by introducing myself and invited them to tell me the reason for being there and how I can be of help. The patient whom I will call “Jane Doe”, started speaking incoherently at which point I thought she may have a speech impediment. Jane’s husband would jump in periodically to clarify her sentences, then he would look down at his phone. I continued to listen intently for 20 minutes as they spoke without stopping. I was also watching their body language. By that time, I understood what was the real reason behind their frustration and I asked questions accordingly. The rest of the session involved examination and continued question and answer on both sides. At the end of our session, Jane was speaking clearly and with more ease. She had a smile on her face. Jane’s husband was no longer looking down at his phone and was fully engaged in our conversation. Jane even stated that for some reason she already feels better even though there was no official treatment done that day.

The point of this story is to show that by active listening, we can really gain some valuable information about others that we may otherwise miss when trying to help them. In addition, the person who is speaking will feel a calming physiological and emotional change in their bodies due to the feeling of trust and safety towards the active listener. This will open their minds and hearts to advice or any suggestions that may be helpful to them.

This simple technique can help with anyone in any situation and make a bigger impact in someone’s life than ever thought possible. Let us make it a habit of listening this way to everyone we encounter.

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