Defined as "something that obscures vision and awareness" a blindspot can have devastating consequences. Just think of the driving blindspots that lead to so many road accidents.
But perhaps there is an even bigger blindspot right under our noses living in plain sight, but hidden. What is it that the majority of humans spend most time on in life after breathing and sleeping? Talking. Communicating is probably the most important and most common activity. And as such we often do it without thinking. But like any skill we pick up in life we tend to go on automatic pilot and try to get away with the least effort. Yet talking and listening, conversations and communicating effectively has the most profound impact on relationships and our quality of life.
Communicating is a skill and like other skills it can be improved. It sounds simple but how many of us are taught to actively listen? How many of us learn how to really understand and be understood. Being understood is a critical human need. It is a big part of our self validation and our self esteem.
The skills are not complex but make a profound difference if applied. Skills like 'listening to understand' can be the priority in a conversation, putting all else out of your mind and feeding back what you are getting. 'Checking for understanding' with the speaker by paraphrasing what you have understood. Simple steps like these can lead to empathy and co-operation.
The opportunity here is 'to improve life one conversation at a time'. Have you noticed which conversations tend to go better? Can you identify the skills which help? Do you agree that these skills can be learnt?
The Moodscope Team
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