Caregiving Essentials- Listening is communications too!
Did you know there are three forms of listening: active listening, passive listening and selective listening? Both active and passive listening is associated with how we in our society listen. While selective listening is credited to teenagers (I will not go into that, you moms and dads know what I mean).
In our busy, detached society, passive listening or merely paying ear service is accepted and we wonder why there is so much miscommunications and disagreements.
As a caregiver one of your essential skills must be active listening! How else can you really communicate with your loved one, a nurse or doctor or other advisers? You need to clear your mind, using self-care methods and learn to actively listen.
Active listening is carefully listening to what people are saying to you. You must make a conscious effort to hear and understand every word they speak.
This active, focused listening is difficult at first because we have to resist the urge to interrupt and we must wait until the speaker has finished completely before responding.
The hazard is that we may miss key parts of the message because as the listener you are thinking of something else or prematurely forming your response to the comment.
In active, focused listening you become sensitive to implied or hidden meanings behind the words (what the speaker is really trying to communicate).
When you take the time and effort to learn active focused listening, you will be pleasantly amazed at how much more you will learn and understand so that your decisions are almost effortless.