Are you listening with your whole body?

(originally posted at Absolution Mediation)
Are you always aware of the message you are sending someone while you are talking OR listening to them? I’m not. If I was going to be honest about it, I would say nobody is fully aware of it all the time. This isn’t really new news to anyone, but something that has caught my attention in the last week.
This week I read a post by Jeff Thompson about Body Language and a post from Steve Mehta about Lousy Listeners, and it got me thinking about what you are saying while you are listening. I’ve written about active listening in a previous post and this is one part of that.
You say a lot when you are listening. There are 3 things that you need to be aware of;
1. Where are your eyes looking? Are you looking at the speaker or are you looking at the clock? Are you focused or are your eyes glazing over? Are you looking them in the eyes or are you looking at their messy hair? Look the person in the eyes, look into their soul and see what they are saying. Look at them, SEE what they are saying.
2. What are your limbs doing? Are you tapping your foot impatiently, fidgeting with your hands, playing with a pen, or a ring on your finger? Be attentive with your limbs, put the pen in your pocket and listen with your limbs. Make gestures that let the speaker know that you are paying attention to their story.
3. What’s your face saying? How’s your poker face? Are you looking bored, shocked, eager, impatient? Listen with your face, soften your expressions, your speaker will know how interested you are by looking at your facial expressions.
What is the hardest part of listening for you?

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