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“An appreciative listener is always stimulating.”
Agatha Christie

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3) Listening to a Friend

With another person spend several minutes talking about how your day has been.  Both talking in a natural, conversational way.

After the two minutes is finished, one of you take the role of the listener and the other as the speaker.

The listener sits in silence for two minutes whilst the speaker talks in more detail about one aspect of their day.

The listener tries to take in as much as possible, in a relaxed manner.

If the speaker cannot think of anything to say, simple sit quietly, until something arises.

After the two minutes is complete, swap roles and engage in the practice for another two minutes.

At the end of the activity discuss:

How did you find just sitting and listening quietly?
Other than not being able to reply to the speaker, as the listener what differences, if any, did you notice in the quality of listening?

Through listening mindfully when we communicate, we may gain insight into the words of Anna Deavere Smith:

To me, the most important doorway into the soul of a person is her or his words.”

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1) Introduction and Part 1

2) Listening to Music

3) Listening to a Friend

4) Listening to a Lecture

5) Listening to the City

6) Listening to Nature

7) Listening with Notes