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The Lost Art of Listening: How Learning to Listen Can Improve Relationships
     

The Lost Art of Listening: How Learning to Listen Can Improve Relationships

4.0 6
by Michael P. Nichols, Nichols
 

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Why do we often feel cut off when speaking to the people closest to us family members, friends, or colleagues? What is it that keeps so many of us from really listening? Michael P. Nichols answers these questions and more in this thoughtful, witty, and helpful look at the reasons people don't hear one another. His book, a guide to the secrets of listening and being

Overview

Why do we often feel cut off when speaking to the people closest to us family members, friends, or colleagues? What is it that keeps so many of us from really listening? Michael P. Nichols answers these questions and more in this thoughtful, witty, and helpful look at the reasons people don't hear one another. His book, a guide to the secrets of listening and being listened to, is filled with vivid examples that clearly demonstrate easy-to-learn techniques for becoming a better listener. He also illustrates how empathic listening enables us to break through misunderstandings and conflict and to transform our personal and professional relationships.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"I'm using this book as a text because it clearly demonstrates the personal issues which get in the way of really focusing on the person and message of the other(s). Such focus leads to the listening which is the center of aspects of ministry. I have heard students say that it puts communication in popular, i.e., understandable terms and that they saw themselves in it." —Leland Elhard, PhD, Department of Pastoral Theology, Trinity Lutheran Seminary

"Lily Tomlin once advised that we 'listen with an intensity that most people save for talking.' Michael Nichols, in The Lost Art of Listening tells us how. This is a very special book which distills years of clinical wisdom into practical advice about improving our most important relationships and, ultimately, who we are. Through the lens of the importance to us all of being heard, Dr. Nichols tells us how genuine listening can prevent broken connections and dried up relationships.

Following his own advice, he presents clear, familiar, and relevant examples of real life family problems and frustrations, in a way that leaves us open to accepting and using his messages. He stresses the need to avoid letting anger, anxiety, and fear of being hurt impede our ability to listen, and tells stories that show us how to manage everything from criticism, to reticence and intrusiveness. Simultaneously, he provides clues for improving self esteem and decreasing emotional reactivity.

This is more than a good book, it is a vital manual for any of us who would either like to feel good about our relationships or avoid dying before the end of our lives." —Carol M. Anderson, PhD, Professor of Psychiatry, University of Pittsburgh Medical Center

"A beautifully written, articulate guide to listening, this book is an antidote to the sense of diminishment experienced by so many as our culture short-circuits our need for interchange with others. Filled with personal stories from his life and the lives of patients, Nichols offers clarification of the listening process between friends, with family, in work situations, and in intimate relationships. The Lost Art of Listening is a pleasure to read and a valuable tool for therapists."—Marion F. Solomon, PhD, Author of Narcissism and Intimacy: Love and Marriage in An Age of Confusion and Lean On Me: The Power of Positive Dependency in Intimate Relationships

"Michael P. Nichols writes as if he is speaking directly to us—and he speaks in a way that makes us not only able, but eager, to listen. What happens between him and his readers embodies key elements of what he wants us to learn about listening. Along the way, we learn about much more."—Thelma Jean Goodrich, PhD, Family Institute of Westchester

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
What is true listening and why, the author asks, has it become a near-rarity in modern life? Nichols (Family Healing) shows how to utilize this ``art by which we use empathy to reach the space across us'' to improve and repair relationships with spouses, lovers, relatives, children, friends and colleagues, and even how to boost one's own ``listenability.'' He also explains what listening isn't, explaining why people don't listen and listing obstacles to listening (especially defensiveness owing to emotional overreaction). Humor, true-life examples and simple exercises make this a practical and even entertaining self-help guide, although Nichols can be a bit long-winded and preachy. (Mar.)
Booknews
Nichols (psychology, College of William and Mary) provides a thoughtful guide to the art of listening, addressing the reasons why we so often fail to listen attentively to others, as well as providing strategies for getting oneself heard. Clear examples demonstrate techniques for better communication in both personal and professional relationships. Lacks an index and a bibliography. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
Contemporary Psychology

"Powerful and informative."--Contemporary Psychology
counsellingresource.com

"I think readers from every walk of life--lay readers and mental health professionals alike--will find something to like here, something that really will turn on a lightbulb or two, something that can help us all get along a bit better and listen a bit more artfully."--counsellingresource.com

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781572301313
Publisher:
Guilford Publications, Inc.
Publication date:
05/03/1996
Series:
Family Therapy Series
Edition description:
Reissue
Pages:
251
Product dimensions:
6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x (d)

Meet the Author

Michael P. Nichols, PhD, a Professor of Psychology at the College of William and Mary, is coauthor (with Salvador Minuchin) of Family Healing, and author of No Place to Hide and Turning Forty in the Eighties among other books. He is a popular speaker and has been a guest on television programs, including Oprah! and CBS This Morning.

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