Stephen R. Covey said: ‘Most people do not listen with the intent to understand. They listen with the intent to reply.’
What is Active Listening?
Active Listening is a way of listening and responding to someone so that they feel seen, heard and, perhaps most importantly, understood.
Child Development Expert Gill Connell stated: “Active Listening is one of the most important ways you can send the message: ‘You’re important to me’”.
It makes the person feel accepted, understood, important, valued and validated. It gives them the space to find their voice again and reminds them that they’re not invisible or alone.
Instead of trying to solve the situation, active listening helps keep the focus on talking about and understanding the nuances of what the speaker feels.
For a person experiencing a anxiety or depression, to know that someone will just listen, understand and empathise, can be very calming, reassuring and even healing.
Sometimes it’s not about the advice that you receive but just knowing that someone is listening and that they care makes all the difference in the world.z
The Benefits of Active Listening
Active Listening in Childline
At Childline, we champion the use of active listening in our interactions with children every day to ensure they feel heard and supported.
Childline’s 24 Hour Listening service provides essential support and solace for children and young people up to 18 years of age.
Whether they have experienced a traumatic event or simply want to talk about their day, we’re here to listen 365 days a year.
We listen for as long as the child needs to talk, cry or just be silent in the presence of a trusted adult.
Knowing there is someone they can turn to when they’re not sure who they can trust with their fears can make a huge difference to a young person’s life.