Listening Versus Hearing

Last evening we had dinner with friends, and they had invited some other people as well. The conversations were quite interesting, and I tried to listen based on some ideas I got from Click, the book I am reading about “the forces behind how we fully engage with people, work, and everything we do.” The authors are the same ones who wrote Sway, and the two books together are quite powerful. If you read The Starfish and the Spider first, which is not what I did, I think the results would be even more significant. But I digress.

This morning as I was doing my startup activities, I realized that I didn’t have a mission statement. And then I realized that I need to make “listening” a big part of my mission statement when I write it. That led to realizing that I need to make “hearing” even more important than listening, because I realize the two are different. Listening could be nothing more than paying attention to what the other person is saying while you are figuring out when you can jump in and take the conversation in a direction that is more interesting to you. Hearing would then be listening to what the person is saying but also what they are leaving out.

That made me realize I wasn’t listening to those of you who have been following my blog for the past few days or weeks and have no idea what the big picture is about. So based on the lack of feedback I am getting, I am going to create a new category where I will post specific things you can do to learn more about the big picture I am talking about. This post will not be in that category, because it isn’t anything that will advance your personal progress toward a significant change in your life.

So, if you are interested in the bigger picture, check out the new category for Composing Change. The instructions will start there, and they will be numbered for ease of use.

Thanks for the comments you have offered thus far. Consider the new category a prototype of a book about getting started. I’m offering the job of editor to all of you who want to make the real book a winner for others.


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