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Over the years, Oprah says she’s learned that life whispers to you all the time. Are you listening? Learn why Oprah believes this lesson is one the of the greatest principles of life.
One of the most important aspects of our experiences is sharing them with others. Therefore, it is just common sense that we feel pleasure when others listen to our stories and that we feel pain when others do not care about our experiences. Dr. Michael Nichols, in his book, “The Lost Art of Listening,” says:
“The essence of good listening is empathy, which can be achieved only by suspending our preoccupation with ourselves and entering into the experience of the other person. Part intuition and part effort, it’s the stuff of human connection. A listener’s empathy – grasping what we’re trying to say and showing it – builds a bond of understanding, linking us to someone who hears us and cares, and thus confirms that our feelings are legitimate and recognizable. The power of empathic listening is the power to transform relationships.”
It is important to remember that listening requires active paticipation. Too many of us take a passive approach and convince ourselves that we are much better listeners than we really are. Listening is vital to the development of our own story and the ability to develop strong relationships. As the old saying goes, “you have two ears and one mouth, so spend your time in conversation listening twice as much as talking.”