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Listening Aids Do More Good than Hearing Aids


Image by Keturah Stickann via Flickr

Statistics indicate that about 1 in 10 people have some degree of hearing loss, with the prevalence of loss increasing to 3 in 10 over the age of 65. A major cause of hearing loss is thought to be loud noise from high volume music, children’s toys and industrial settings.  Safe and cheap ways to stave off the purchase of a hearing aid are wearing hearing protection in loud environments, turning down the volume and educating friends and children of these facts.

Listening loss” is far more prevalent than “hearing loss.” About 80% of the population least prefers Auditory (listening) inputs, when taking in information. Is it any wonder that meetings are long and people don’t understand one another, when the “transmitting style” is Auditory and the preferred “receiving styles” areVisual and Kinesthetic?  Frequent mistakes are made in business and personal interactions when people have to act upon and pass on Auditory information, instructions and directions. Most students struggle in learning situations involving lectures with a minimum of things to look at and do, because the “teaching style” is misaligned with their “learning style.” The world would be more effective and peaceful if we were better listeners.

Listening Aids

Listening aids are Free. They improve relationship rapport, facilitate understanding, avoid costly mistakes and free up more available time. The practical neuroscience methods for improving listening skills shown below apply to 80% of the population. For those of you whose primary or secondary preferred pathway to receive sensory information is Auditory, you are already attentive and patient listeners, ask great questions, remember and trust what you heard and can read tone-of-voice to detect incongruence reliably; you think about the meaning of words and are good at crafting language for talks, presentations, contracts and copy.

  • Be More Visual: Look at the person in face-to-face situations. Comfortable eye contact communicates that you are paying attention. Observe their body language; what is it communicating? Take notes. Let the other person see your notes. Ask them to use a white board or flip chart or outline key points on a piece of paper. This helps understanding, because you are integrating a primary sensory pathway (Visual) with Auditory.
  • Be Less Visual: In a lecture situation or on the phone, close your eyes occasionally to remove visual distractions; this helps you focus on what is being said. You can still take notes with your eyes closed.
  • Be More Kinesthetic: Engaging in a physical activity, such as moving about respectfully or squeezing a Koosh ball while listening, may help you process Auditory information. You may offer to take a walk or share a meal with another person who wants to have a discussion with you.
  • Be More Auditory: Listen to the tone-of-voice. Is it in alignment with what is being said? Ask questions to clarify the meaning of what people are saying and any incongruence you sense between the words and tone-of-voice. Paraphrase what you heard.

In conclusion, “listening loss” is outpacing “hearing loss” at seemingly epidemic rates. The advent of smart phones with visual/kinesthetic texting, games, email and the internet seem to be further defocusing our attention from crafting and listening to the spoken word. Practical neuroscience methods easily and quickly improve listening skills, so we can have greater connectivity and richer relationships with people at home and work.

Author Message:
You may not be aware that our organization is a trusted and respected source of reliable practical neuroscience solutions for personal and organizational development.  We have been creating and delivering brain-based human development solutions, since 1992. The message that follows directs you to a quick, easy, and low cost solution you may be searching for.

It’s amazing that so many of us have become poor listeners; I was amongst you not so long ago. Your personalized Brain PathWays report scientifically measures and describes your preferences for listening, learning, thinking, problem solving, and decision making. The report provides practical neuroscience tools, based on your brain strengths to “be the best you can be;” this includes being a more respectful and attentive listener. The on-line process takes less than 15 minutes, the results last a life time. Click to purchase your Brain PathWays online self-assessment and download your report today.

One comment on “Listening Aids Do More Good than Hearing Aids

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    January 4, 2012

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