The Zen of Listening: Mindful Communication in the Age of Distraction
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The Zen of Listening: Mindful Communication in the Age of Distraction

3.81 of 5 stars 3.81  ·  rating details  ·  114 ratings  ·  22 reviews
In this age of distraction, barriers to listening are everywhere: multi-tasking, obsession with time/speed, self-consciousness, and the constant noise of radio, phone, TV and traffic, all of which interferes with our ability to get 'the whole message'. Rebecca Shafir assures us we can make powerful connections and transform our lives simply by remembering how to listen. He...more
Published October 1st 2000 by Quest Books (IL)
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A constructive and mindful approach to improving your capacity for being fully present with others and connecting with them on a deeper level by listening, to both others and yourself. Listening and paying attention are rightly promoted as some of the most caring and healing acts we can do for others.

I find myself now paying more attention to obstacles preventing me from listening to people, more consciousous of how I'm responding, and looking forward to listening to people I normally don't want...more
This was a deceptively simple read; the book was easy to get through, but after you read each chapter you are left with a lot to think about. Not a typical communications book full of techniques, this book concentrates on how you think about interactions. Reading the book will leave you with insights that will help you to improve your interactions with others, both by thinking about how you listen, and by helping you to better understand interactions which bother you. As I read the book in paper...more
Artur Massana
I've conducted some trainings related to the so-called "active listening" approach. I bought this book because I liked the non-behavioral approach to listening that this book advocates. I strongly agree with the intuition that you might behave as you were listening and at the very same time being totally mindless about the content of the message. So, the only way to improve your listening skills is "digging deeper" and start changing some convictions, attitudes and... paying mindful attention to...more
Fantastic advice in this book! I considered myself a good listener, but after reading the examples in this book I've discovered there is a lot of room for improvement! I am working on listening without judgement or bias, but I'm especially focusing on listening to others without my own agenda (yes - I was the person who tends to interrupt, finish people's thoughts for them and bring the focus of the conversation back to what I wanted to discuss).

Another wonderful nugget of wisdom in this book is...more
Jennifer Sweeney
Very applicable in all areas of life: career, parenting, marriage, friendship, etc.
I'm a sucker for any book with the title "The Zen of ....." So I picked up The Zen of Listening with high hopes. It's a gentle, good book, especially for beginners and those with ADD. But for anyone who has thought about or read about listening, there won't be many surprises here. Just good, commonsense Zen teachings about mindfulness, presence, and attentiveness. Shafir shares some good stories and the sense of calm engagement she projects is very, well, Zen-like. I think she would make a great...more
Ingrid Exner
This is another great book that I am glad that I picked up a few years ago. I had always been into Mindfullness so, the cover caught my eye right away. This is a great reference book as well as a great reminder for those of us who either think that we are great listeners or that people are listening to us. It dicusses all those "techniques" like paraphrasing, summation etc but, it ialso talks about the benefits and the reasons why we really need to both tell our stories and to listen to the stor...more
This book is a very effective teaching tool. It is full of hands on, practical advice. I learned a lot from her writing!
Rebecca Young
Very good book and an interesting read overall. The first few chapters were the very best and so useful in analyzing your own listening style. She have very practical and useful suggestions for improving listening skills. I felt like the book was a little longer than necessary and completely skipped parts that were strictly about office/boss interactions. I love the simple idea of staying mindful in a conversation and learning to stop the distractions in our own heads.
Holly Dietor
There is a reason we are created with two ears and only one mouth; we should be listening two times as much as we speak.

Do you understand the difference between hearing and listening? Do you know how to turn your willingness to truly listen into a gift? Read this book.

Learn how to be present and open to what is being shared with you. It will help you grow into a true Human Being.
Really nice, helpful, and well written. The art of listening from the point of view of mindfulness, how to practice it, teach it and use it for us especially in this age of distraction.

Veramente bello, utile e ben scritto. L'arte dell'ascolto dal punto di vista della mindfulness, come praticarlo, insegnarlo ed usarlo soprattutto nei nostri confronti in quest'epoca di distrazioni.
Dec 28, 2009 Nancy added it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Nancy by: the UUA Web site
Wordy but a lot of practical advice on how to become a better listener. contains practical advice on how to remember peoples' names, listen in confrontational situations, etc.
This was a good book that really makes you think about how well you listen. I liked that she gave an approach to listening rather than just tips and tricks.
Some passages were a bit tedious but the overall message was good. Useful information for work, school and life in general.
Lorian Gray
Aug 23, 2008 Lorian Gray is currently reading it  ·  review of another edition
I realized how much negative self-talk I have going on that totally eclipses what other people are trying to say to me.
A good blend of helpful exercises and thoughtful insights, though it was sometimes a bit too simplistic for my taste.
Very effective tool to help us remember how to communicate effectively in the age of technology.
Joanne Cinquemani
Feb 28, 2008 Joanne Cinquemani rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: anyone interested in sharpening their listening skills
This is a great book to help the reader re-focus on the art of listening.
Excellent read on the importance of "mindful listening."
Mark Fallon
Are you truly present when listening to others?
Insightful wisdom about how to really listen.
simple advice salted in with common sense ideas
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“A good listener is not only one who processes the spoken word and the meaning behind the words accurately, but one who makes the speaker feel valued by encouraging him to expand on his ideas and feelings. A good listener touches the lives of those to whom he listens.” 0 likes
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