Storytelling Experiment: Day 5 – Listening

I’ve been sharing a 5 Day Storytelling Experiment that you can try yourself, and this final piece is about ‘Story Listening’.

We are all expert social creatures, who have grown up in dynamic story environments: some stories that reinforce and amplify each other, others of which oppose and deny. Sometimes our stories carry compassion and certainty, at other times violence and doubt.

Every day we filter and sort the narratives that surround us: what is important, what is growing louder, what is fading away. We filter through various contexts: is this story told by someone ‘important’, will there be consequence if i respond, or fail to respond?

But in all this noise, we rarely stop to listen, and to consider how to recognise and learn.

People typically describe their key challenge as involving time: there is too much to do in our noisy environments, and not enough time. But what if ‘time’ is a proxy for something else? What if there is a specific competence around Story Listening, and what if it does not even take much time at all?

Where, and how, do you listen?

It’s also easy to just end up hearing loud voices, but can you hear the quieter ones that you may need to empower and amplify?

It’s always tempting to add to a story, to respond to it, but consider this:

  1. Can you listen, but not respond with certainty?
  2. Can you respond with gratitude, or respect?
  3. How would you respond to give pride?
  4. Do you know any good listeners? Are you one of them?
  5. Do you just listen to loud voices, or actively find weaker ones?

Questions

  1. What is hard about listening?
  2. Do you just listen to stories that you want to hear?
  3. How do you tend to respond?
  4. What is a quiet story that you have recently heard?

Feel free to share your answers below, and check out the previous four days of the experiment, and the experiences that people have shared.

About julianstodd

Author and Founder of Sea Salt Learning. My work explores the Social Age. I’ve written ten books, and over 2,000 articles, and still learning...
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14 Responses to Storytelling Experiment: Day 5 – Listening

  1. andreaflorescont says:

    1. We have differents opinions so the difficult here is any person like change youre opinion so we can really lisend if you don’t put youre mine in the other side of the story.
    2. I thing any story need to be tell if i don’t like to listening.
    3. I try to listening for respecfull.
    4. In a class i listening a history about tales so this material really help to learn more.
    I’m mexican and study in the Normal Superior for to be a teacher and the theacher Rosa del Carmen tell us about this proyect and it’s very interesting thank you for bring this material to have a refleccion about what suppost to do in the class because a teacher always tell histories.

  2. Wendy says:

    1. Today it is difficult to get people’s attention through the media that far from being beneficial keep us away from interacting and engaging in conversation which involves listening and talking 2. No. I am a teacher and I owe it to my students to listen to them even if they tell us less significant stories, but for them you may be the only person paying attention to them. Emotionally speaking 3. With patience and understanding 4. The story of my 84-year-old mother, I just know that although she tells me repetitive things to her it is vitally important that I listen to her. And I love doing it

  3. Victor says:

    1.- I think sometimes it will be the lack of interest of what we are hearing
    2.- No I like to listen to all kind of stories even if I don’t agree with what they are saying, when you listen to different opinios you always learn someting new, instead to always listen to the same opinion that you agree with.
    3.- I always like to respond in a possitive manner
    4.- I was with my mom and I was listening to her stories when she was a little child, and how the city has changed over the years.

  4. mvera7 says:

    1. in my case, in my chaotic and noisy world, to silence myself to give way to other voices, other stories,
    and give them the appropriate relevance
    2. No
    3.I try to be as empathetic as possible
    4. I listened to my 5-year-old student explaining to me that he sells keychains that he himself makes with his sister

    • Danny Mendoza says:

      #1 cause i need to see the person that is talking, even if I’m watching the locutor but the tone of the voice or the movements are not interesting I get lost.
      #2 I listen all kind of stories but my attention could get lost if the topic is boring.
      #3 sometimes with disinterest .
      #4 alice in wonderland

  5. Estefania says:

    1.- We live in a messy world, always running and thinking in a lot of things, so, get the attention and interest to the people is really hard. Catch the attention of the persons will be really difficult to listen to.
    2.- No! As a Kindergarten teacher, I need to hear every story, every word to my kids said because I want to make my kids feel heard and loved.
    3.- With a lot of patience, trying to show interest.
    4.- I listened to my 3-years-old student, teaching me how she does her lunch with her mom.

  6. Ebed Barrón Ramírez says:

    1. It is difficult to learn to listen today with a group of people with a disorderly communication or discussion without their own meaning, either simply by fighting personal points of view or obtaining their own reason on a specific topic. On these everyday situations it is important to learn to listen to take the correct and informed points of view and through that make important and relevant comments on the subject.
    2. I regularly listen to different varieties and versions of stories but I do not pay attention but I find an interest or productivity, but I would also like to mention that if I pay attention and focus on relevant issues whether they seem to interest me or that they can help me grow professionally and in turn they generate a practical knowledge that I can apply in my daily life.
    3. First I analyze the conversation of the speakers.
    Second, I like to respond in an assertive and persuasive way respecting the views of the speakers and without falling into discussion or problems.
    Third, if it is a conversation that will not reach a specific end or resolution of the problem and causes controversy, I prefer to end the conversation diplomatically.
    4. The lifestyle of people who lived 20 years ago.

  7. Ebed Barrón Ramírez says:

    1. It is difficult to hear when there are discussion conversations, since each of the speakers fight their own points of view, taking the points of the other participants little.
    2. I regularly listen to different varieties and versions of stories but I don’t pay attention but I find an interest or productivity, but I would also like to mention that if I pay attention and focus on relevant issues whether they seem to interest me or that they see that they can help me grow from in a professional way and in turn generate a practical knowledge in my daily life.
    3.First I analyze the conversation of the speakers.
    Second, I like to respond in an assertive and persuasive way respecting the views of the speakers and without falling into discussion or problems.
    Third, if it is a conversation that will not reach a specific end or resolution of the problem and causes controversy, I prefer to end the conversation diplomatically.
    4. The lifestyle of people who lived 20 years ago.

  8. Claudia Davila says:

    1-What is difficult to hear? Feel what the other person really conveys
    2-Do you only listen to the stories you want to hear? I hear what is important in my life
    3-How do you usually respond? Depending on what you think, if I agree, I give you the reason and if I’m not, I give it my point
    4-What is a quiet story that you have heard recently? Now the news only speaks of violence

  9. Adilene Morales says:

    1- damos por hecho que existe una conexión con la persona a la que estamos contando una historia que creemos y hacemos creer que “deben” o “están escuchando”, sin embargo, cuando no se creó un vinculo, cuando no hay conexión, no se genero interés, ni se motiva a la persona a que escuche, esto de escuchar resulta mucho muy difícil de hacer.

    2-sólo escucho lo que me interesa.

    3-Respondo del mismo modo en el que me están platicando algo.

    4-una anecdota de mi abuelita, me platicaba tan tranquilamente y así mismo era como yo respondía, porque eso me trasmitía, (tranquilidad).

    Adilene Morales

  10. Ximena Valdez says:

    1- concéntrate
    2-no
    3-enthusiastic
    4- the little mermaid

  11. jevsss says:

    1 I think that the difficult things is not to listen to people, but to pay attention to what is being talked about is the difficult

    2 personally ,yes because I don’t like them to think about what I should do in a way that will bring my attention to the certain subjects.

    3 well a lot of time not doing it

    4 the llorona, bambi,

  12. Juan David Zapata Zamora says:

    1- the hardest thing to listen is to keep literal ideas and inferred ideas in mind to then respond accurately
    2- I don’t think so, I listen as much stories as I can
    3- I tend to respond trying to give my point of view of things, so I could widen other people’s mind
    4- the problem some students have with some school subjects and specific teachers

  13. Violeta Navarro says:

    1. That sometimes you don`t give enough time to listen to the other people.
    2. Yes. most of the time.
    3. According to what I listen.
    4. The history`s of my childrens.

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