You’re Not Listening: we’re too busy thinking what we’ll say next rather than listening

Book review: Kate Murphy shines a light on a culture that places a premium on performance, talking and oration

Anyone with even a passing engagement with modern culture will be aware of the myriad distractions that interfere with meaningful social interactions

Anyone with even a passing engagement with modern culture will be aware of the myriad distractions that interfere with meaningful social interactions

On the face of it you might think that listening is so natural and commonplace a part of the human experience that we need barely acknowledge it. And yet it transpires that in this particular arena most of us are very much found lacking.

Whether we are inured from narratives and experiences outside our own on social media’s echo chamber, or we’ve perfected the art of dinner party banter, journalist Kate Murphy reveals an uncomfortable truism. We are constantly in contact with each other; often to the point of excess. And yet the art of listening – not just hearing, but truly, authentically listening – is a lost one. We’re too busy thinking of what we will say next rather than listening with true intent.

The Irish Times
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