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Writing Assignment 2: Listening StylesCOM 2206.50606/26/2020Listening is the ability to accurately receive and interpret messages in the communication process. It is key to all effective communication. Without the ability to listen effectively, messages are easily misunderstood. As a result, communication breaks down and the sender of the message can easily become frustrated or irritated. Good listening skills also have benefits in our personal lives, including a greater number of friends and social networks, improved self-esteem and confidence, higher grades at school and in academic work, and even better health and general well-being. The importance of listening in interpersonal relationships cannot be overemphasized. One study conducted by Faye Doell (2003) showed that there are two different types of listening: “listening to understand” and “listening to respond.” Those who “listen to understand” have greater satisfaction in their interpersonal relationships than others. According to psychologist Carl Rogers, active or deep listening is at the heart of every healthy relationship. It’s also the most effective way to bring about growth and change. Those who are heard tend to be more open, more democratic in their ways, and are often less defensive. Good listeners refrain frommaking judgments and provide a safe environment and container for speakers.By listening carefully when someone speaks, we are telling them that we care about what they are saying. It is also important to remember that listening is contagious. When we listen to others, then chances are they will be more inclined to listen to us.Hearing is an accidental and automatic brain response to sound that requires no effort. We are surrounded by sounds most of the time. For example, we are accustomed to the sounds of airplanes, lawnmowers, furnace blowers, the rattling of pots and pans, and so on. We hear those incidental sounds and, unless we have a reason to do otherwise, we train ourselves to
ignore them. We learn to filter out sounds that mean little to us, just as we choose to hear our ringing cell phones and other sounds that are more important to us. Listening, on the other hand, is purposeful and focused rather than accidental. For example, sometimes we automatically and unconsciously block out irritating sounds, such as a neighbor’s lawnmoweror the roar of nearby traffic. We also stop listening when we find a subject unimportant or uninteresting. Listening requires motivation and effort. Listening, at its best, is active, focused, concentrated attention to understand the meanings expressed by a speaker. Task-oriented listening is most concerned with efficiency and accomplishing the job at hand.