Something that we learn as coaches is the quote, “Most people listen to reply”. This means that as a species, we often let our ego get in the way when we are in conversation with others. We want to respond cleverly, or appropriately, for example, and we might even find ourselves cutting the other person off (This phenomenon however is also a sign of mental fatigue).
When we active listen, however, whether as a coach or as an empathetic person, we don’t make it about us. We genuinely want to take in what the other person has to say, and if there is a call to action, to help bring out something in that person that they might not get out on their own.
Listening to connect and not to dominate is a wonderful way to deepen friendships, ease social anxieties, and learn new things.