The Process of Listening Essay

The Process of Listening Essay

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The Process of Listening

“Wisdom is the reward you get for a lifetime of listening when you’d have preferred to talk.” (Deep and Sussman 76)

Upon studying listening within another course, the vast and somewhat unclear subject began to become clearer. The act of listening entails in-depth processes that elude a majority of people’s knowledge. The act of listening involves four main parts: hearing, attention, understanding and remembering. Listening entails a vast amount of information that a majority of people does not know or understand.
The common view on listening often does not even involve true listening. People often mistake hearing for listening. Just because you heard something does not necessarily mean that you were listening. While others do not even realize that listening is one step of a four-part process. While two people are involved in communication, the one receiving the message while “listening” formulates the next phase within their head. They miss a large percentage of what the person involved in speaking is saying (Tubbs and Moss 141). The reasons [for ineffective listening] are so obvious that they are sometimes overlooked. First, listening is mistakenly equated with hearing and since most of us can hear, no academic priority is given to this subject in college. Second, we perceive power in speech. We put a value on those who have the gift of gab. How often have you heard the compliment, “He/she can talk to anyone?” Additionally, we equate speaking with controlling both the conversation and the situation. The third and last reason we don’t listen, is that we are in an ear of information overload. We are bombarded with the relevant and the irrelevant and it is easy to confuse them. Often it is all jus...


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...er, Larry. Listening Behavior Englewood, Cliffs, NJ: Prentice-Hall, 1971, 61-63.
Bostrom, Robert N., Enid S. Waldhart. “Memory Models and the Measurement of Listening.” Communication Education. 1998: 1-13.
Brooks, William D. Speech Communication, 4th ed. Dubuque, IA: Brown, 1981: 82.
Deep, Sam, and Lyle Sussman. Yes you Can! Reading, MA: Addison-Wesley, 1998, 4-7.
Goss, Blain. Processing Information. Belmont, CA: Wadsworth, 1982, 91.
Koehler, Carol. Mending the Body by Lending and Ear: The healing Power of Listening. New York: 1998, 534-544.
Losoncy, Lewis. Today. Boca Raton, FL: St. Lucie Press, 1998, 27.
Moray, Neville. Listening and Attention. Baltimore, MA: Penguin, 1969, 18.
Rogers, Carl. On Becoming a Person. Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1961, 330.
Tubbs, Stewart L., Sylvia, Moss. Human Communication. Eastern Michigan University: McGraw Hill, 1994.

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