We have lost the ability to listen. Not just to hear, but to intentionally hear something and receive it.
I notice this in meetings and in conversations. 99% of us are just waiting for our turn to yell. And when we’re done yelling, the next person gets a chance to yell. Sometimes we all yell at the same time.
I don’t always mean literally yelling, but that’s what it feels like. We speak with nobody actually processing what we’re saying.
This non-listening can be spurred by sensitive topics or a particular person that tends to increase the volume and reduce the listening capacity in the room.
My only advice for combatting this is to be the super-centered voice of reason. Don’t yell, calmly take your place in the room and speak. Sometimes slowly. If you are interrupted, you can be assertive and regain control, but do so in a way that is not angered.
You can’t change everyone else, you can only change you. Don’t fall victim. Know how to listen and know how to communicate calmly.