Effective Communication

How to use listening as a creative force

June 6, 2022
min read

Over the past few weeks I’ve had the privilege of helping a group of wonderful people start peer coaching via my latest exploratory venture RunYourself. As part of the onboarding process, we practice together the key coaching techniques – reflective listening, open-ended questions and sharing experience with permission.

The technique that people have found both most difficult, but also most impactful is that of listening intently without interrupting.

A quote to keep in mind

“Listening to reply is different from listening to ignite.

Listening like this is a creative force.

Listening this profoundly can feel like just sitting there. It can feel like not being an expert. It can feel like not being a leader. It can feel like doing nothing. It can feel like a waste of time.

But attention of this calibre is exactly the thing that saves time, that even generates time. This is because truly good independent thinking emerges.

A person’s finest thinking lives inside those linings of minutes when you are not plotting or trying or prying loose.”

– Nancy Kline, ‘More Time To Think’

How to use listening as a creative force

I’m not sure that I have better words than Nancy Kline’s:

“How do you generate such attention? In two words? Get interested.

Get interested in the fact that the person is thinking. Keep your eyes on their eyes, breathe out and get interested.

Decide that unless you have a seriously unsavoury personal emergency, you will not interrupt them.

(In fact, if you could decide that today, from this point forward, you would never again interrupt people, your impact on them and the quality of your relationships would deepen immediately.)”

Author Portrait
Written by
Mica Vaipan

Performance & wellbeing coach, entrepreneur. Formerly startup founder, tech startup COO and investment banker.

Keep Reading

More from our Blog

Start the week feeling supercharged

Every Monday morning get a 30-second note from me to help you start the week from a point of strength and balance

* By signing up to our newsletter you're consenting to our Privacy Policy. You'll be able to unsubscribe anytime by contacting us or using the unsubscribe link in our communications.