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Just Listen: Discover the Secret to Getting Through to Absolutely Anyone
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Just Listen: Discover the Secret to Getting Through to Absolutely Anyone

4.05 of 5 stars 4.05  ·  rating details  ·  1,668 ratings  ·  169 reviews
The first make-or-break step in persuading anyone to do any thing is getting them to hear you out. Whether the person is a harried colleague, a stressed-out client, or an insecure spouse, things will go from bad to worse if you can't break through emotional barricades.
Hardcover, 256 pages
Published September 1st 2009 by AMACOM/American Management Association
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An excellent book, I'll probably buy it in paperback and re-read it periodically.

Some reminders of what it says:

Stop trying to be interesting, be interested instead.

Practice moving quickly from: Oh fuck! (reaction) to Oh God! (emotional release) to Oh Jeez (re-centre yourself) to Oh well (re-focus) to OK (you are ready to fix this).

Everyone wants to feel "felt".

Letting a person in crisis exhale: they vent, be quiet, they stop, say "tell me more", don't engage or debate or offer solutions, just l...more
Norm Konzelman
I need this book as a must have, to aquire the skills/habits the author presents. The principles he lays out are profound, and yet when you give them thought, you realize it's just common sense, often times you could even say "common courtesy" in the respect it gives another.
The author presents his work with a worldly view that at times was weird to hear, as in "reptile brain, mammal brain, human brain", but when taken in a biblical context, he borrows what God laid out in His word ages ago.
I ha...more
There are a lot of interesting and salient points made in this book about connecting with people. Some of it seems like common sense, and some of it seems truly novel. At times, though, while I was reading certain chapters, it felt more like a guidebook on how to manipulate others and less like suggestions or recommendations on how to connect with people in a genuine, authentic way. That troubles me and that's why I gave this book 3 stars instead of 4 or 5.

To be clear, the author is definitely a...more
"Just Listen" is an outstanding, practical how-to guide for becoming a better face-to-face communicator. As a professional communicator, I often find it easier to write for an amorphous, anonymous large audience, or speak in front of a large room, rather than work one on one with people who are resistant or difficult. Dr. Goulston's book is for people like me, who are friendly, sociable and articulate, but need to refine their personal leadership skills. Sometimes I am prone to thinking that som...more
Erika RS
The core message of this book is sound: getting people to listen to you requires you listening to them. Effective communication requires work to understand the person you are trying to communicate with. Beyond the core message, this book had a lot of practical tips with something of a laundry list feel to their presentation.

I like a lot of the tips, but I sometimes felt the author did not really address the concerns of an average person trying to learn how to listen and communicate better. If y...more
I read this book in a few hours from my college online library. I just ordered a copy from amazon, this book has so much information that will help me in my personnel life and professional life. Looking forward to getting my copy! there is a lot i want to highlight and re-read. I highly recommend.
Mario Tomic
Very cool book on empathy and managing relationships with people practically in all areas of your life. I'd say it's a must read for anyone dealing with people, for me it was interested as it helps me become a better coach for my clients. If you're a manager, CEO, doctors, attorney, parent or any similar position this book will teach you the exact skills to master the art of maintaining win-win relationships with people you interact with. The only reason why I don't give it 5 stars is because it...more
Apr 07, 2013 Kelly rated it 5 of 5 stars
Shelves: own
This book is a very practical, applicable, "how to" on getting people from a defensive position to one where they may listen to you. Most of us won't have to deal with a hostage situation but at times we may feel like the idiot we're trying to help has us held hostage as they are reacting defensively to a situation and failing to act logically. Goulston does a marvelous job of explaining ways and methods to approach these delicate situations. Hint, don't call the person an idiot. He also does a...more
There are several points made this book become one of my favorite book. How this book organized is so effective for learning.

1.Always inroduce concepts with mini stories from the author's real life. This not only attracted the audience
but also showed how he is real great communicator who care reader's think, for example from Sect I: chap 2
"..I got the point. Most poeple reading this book don't care about neurons and neurotransmitter.."
Therefore the scientific part in this book comprise Three...more
This book gives plenty of realistic scenarios: my teenager son hardly tells me anything, I have to work with a co-worker who's constantly angry, my boss doesn't get what I'm saying, and my spouse and I are always fighting. As you're listening to these scenarios (complete with realistic dialogues), you think "Yes, I've been there. What do I need to do to fix it?" The author then gives solutions that move people from arguing to empathizing to listening. The solutions aren't earth shattering. The s...more
Full of relatable and easy to use techniques!

I thoroughly enjoyed Goulston’s book! And, while I understand why some people have written reviews stating that he writes with an arrogant tone and tries to show-off his accomplishments, I disagree with this assessment.

While Goulston does use examples from his experience as a psychiatrist and consultant, I think the book has a friendly, genuinely-interested-in-helping-people voice. In fact, as a young woman who didn’t receive much parenting in the w...more
Goulston identifies our three brains; the snake brain, the rat brain, and the Mr Spock brain. Obviously, I want to be at Mr Spock level and Goulston has several techniques to reach my nirvana.

From his book: "Techniques create traction – they pull people in. Most people upshift when they want to get through to other people. They persuade, encourage, argue, push. In the process, they create resistance. When you use these techniques, you’ll do the opposite – listen, ask, mirror and reflect back t...more
Earl Gray
This is an excellent book on deep, effective listening. It simply and accessibly written. The first section about the difference between the three main ways our brain responds and the illustrations of it are worth the price of the book alone. I am experientially learning my way through it, applying the different aspects.

04.06.12 - This book is remarkable, full of cascading, remarkable insights. Read this, slowly, and put it into play. It will make a difference in your life.
Excellent book, I got the audio version and keep playing it at my office. I've listened to it at least 4 times so far and every time find a new lesson. Helpful and with many insights for personal and business life.
You have to read for your own sake. Nowadays we spend a lot of time dealing with many different people. We have been raised in a world were the "stronger" has to crash the "weaker" (At least you ave to let them think like that), where we are all stressed out by situations or other peo...more
I originally picked up the audiobook through my library. I have found that this is a better media for absorbing information and helps me to process more productively and creatively. I will be purchasing this audiobook for my home library, but have already ordered a paperback so that I can break out the highlighter to correlate my scribbled notes everywhere.

Yes, this deals with common sense. But it also suggests alternative questions to ask, ones I would rarely think to ask, and usually only afte...more
В книге Марка Гоулстона «Я слышу вас насквозь» автор призывает читателей не к тому, чтобы просто научиться читать мысли людей, а научится их понимать, научиться глубоко проникнутся тем или иным человеком, и попытаться побывать в его шкуре.

Автор уверяет, что только после этого как вам удастся это сделать, а это не так уж и сложно, то отношения и взаимная коммуникация выйдет совсем на новый, очень высокий уровень. Автор постоянно напоминает, что множество проблем между людьми происходит не обязате...more
This was a paradigm changing book that I think everyone should read. It is how we don't really listen to others for understanding. We need to be more attentive and we would get much more satisfaction out of our relationships. If you have teenagers this book should be a must read.
Miranda Diaz
Dr. Goulston outlines strategies for faster coping during crisis, mirroring others, recognizing needs, and deescalating with a little manipulation thrown in for good measure. Some of his examples were a titch simplistic and not-so-believable, but on the whole a very good read.
Apr 25, 2013 Homy added it
If you want to have deeper connection with people in your life, the secret is deep listening ... to what is said and what is not said. Mark Goulston opens a door to many clues that we usually ignore and never able to open up the secret chest of our companions.
Heather Couchenour
Amazing. I am trying to put it into play on a daily basis. I learned a lot about how to be a better listener. I have a lot to learn. I am hoping that other's will see an improvement in my communication styles.

Wish I'd read this book 30 years ago! Listened to this on audiobook. The author has a nice voice to listen to. I bought this for students at a university college of business--I think this would benefit many of our students.

I think this book would be most useful for someone who is an executive or manager, but still useful for others. What it doesn't address (and hey you can't expect the guy to do everything in one book) is differences in the approach that women may need to take. I can see his sug...more
Stephen Bump
Although the title of this book hints that listening is all you have to do to get through to people, the author actually describes techniques much more complex than simply listening. The art of getting through to difficult people involves different techniques depending on the situation. However, the basis behind each technique is the same. A few key points that Goulston makes is to make the other person feel valued and “felt,” try to be interested instead of interesting, and help people to menta...more
khadar Ismail
Aug 25, 2010 khadar Ismail marked it as to-read
Recommended by Mohamed a friend of my
Many thanks my dear will buy n read it.
This book is insightful and clear, and gives excellent advice for talking with people in a wide variety of settings - from hostage-type situations to sales to getting the ear of the well-guarded and influential. Goulston shifts frames seamlessly, so he is perfectly attuned to his audience (both his reading audience and his speaking audience). And he's very good at defining boundaries (e.g., stay away from sociopaths!) and showing how frequently we perceive boundaries that aren't really there (e....more
Effective communication starts with listening

Being the life of the party won’t help you make a sale. In fact, letting other people take the spotlight will actually garner more admiration and eventual “buy-in,” explains psychiatrist Mark Goulston. This advice follows his axiom, “be more interested than interesting,” which is one of his nine principles for connecting with others. Goulston, who has trained police officers and U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation hostage negotiators, devotes a chapt...more
Omar Halabieh
As the title indicates this book is about discovering "the secret to getting through to absolutely anyone". In this book Mark presents what he calls the "Persuasion Cycle". He argues that all successful communications move through the steps of this cycle, from beginning to end. The stages are:

-From resisting to listening

-From listening to considering

-From considering to willing to do

-From willing to do to doing

-From doing to glad they did and continuing to do

The book then goes on to introduce ru...more
Grant Miller
I've always been better at 'telling' than listening. In fact I was listening impaired until my late 40's - so much so that my inability to listen nearly destroyed my most important relationships. No, I'm not going to credit Mark Goulston's "Just Listen" with saving my marriage, but I will credit Mark's book with helping me understand and develop the emotional intelligence to be more empathetic with others and with myself.

"Just Listen" starts out with a brief explanation of brain physiology, a mo...more
Michael Estey
Just Listen
by Mark Goulston

Discover the secret to getting through to absolutely anyone...

I love self-help books don't you?
Google Books and Amazon are pumping
them out left and right,
Big Sellers.
But this one
"Just Listen," has been around for a few years.

There was a time I thought no one understood me.

Sound familiar?

Mark Goulston provides a step by step guide on The Persuasion Cycle:

How do you get people from resisting to listening to what I have to say.
From listening to consider...more
In September 2012 Jeff wrote, "Mark Goulston offers some fantastic tips for enhancing communication with people who might otherwise be unreceptive. His suggestions regarding mirroring others, working them incrementally toward agreement, making them "feel felt", and making them feel valuable can be applied by anyone. And while the content is excellent, the real challenge here is in applying it, day in and day out. The behaviors Goulston suggests are not the behaviors that come to us naturally. Ac...more

I was a bit skeptical of this book until I got half-way through it and realised that I was immediately using many of the strategies it described to good effect. In particular, Chapter 2, about maintaining poise under stress, was very good and I found that the concepts in Chapter 12 helped to motivate me toward finding success in my own life (just apply the 'impossibility question' to your own situation - it really works!). I read a book about Non Violent Communication at the same time and there...more
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MARK GOULSTON, M.D., is a business psychiatrist and consultant, author of the bestselling Just Listen, and subject of the PBS special “Just Listen with Dr. Goulston.” He writes a Tribune syndicated career column; blogs for Fast Company, Business Insider, Huffington Post, and Psychology Today; and is featured frequently in major media including The Wall Street Journal, Harvard Business Review, Fort...more
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“One absolutely crucial element in moving your brain from panic to logic is to put words to what you’re feeling at each stage.” 2 likes
“Don’t be afraid of sharing your vulnerabilities. Vulnerability doesn’t make you weak, it makes you accessible. Know that your vulnerability can be your strength. —KEITH FERRAZZI, AUTHOR, WHO’S GOT YOUR BACK” 1 likes
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