2.3 Discussion Board: Are You Listening To Me?


  • “I remind myself every morning: Nothing I say this day will teach me anything. So if I’m going to learn, I must do it by listening.” – Larry King
  • “When you talk, you are only repeating what you already know. But when you listen, you might learn something new.” – The Dalai Lama
  • “Knowledge speaks, but wisdom listens.” – Jimi Hendrix
  • “I like to listen. I have learned a great deal from listening carefully…When people talklisten completely. Most people never listen.” – Ernest Hemingway

Depending on the communication textbook you read, poor listening skills can result from any of a number of barriers to effective listening. Consider this partial list of barriers:

  • Selective Listening – picking and choosing those parts of the message that suit our purposes.
  • False Listening – pretending to listen by giving signals, such as nodding our heads, that would indicate we are listening, though we are focused elsewhere.
  • Impatient Listening – mentally preparing our response while “listening,” preventing us from fully attending to the speaker.
  • Discourteous Listening – interrupting the speaker unnecessarily before he or she has finished speaking.
  • Not Concentrating – interrupting our own listening by thinking about other things.
  • Listening Too Hard – taking in the speaker’s every word as if every word were equally important.
  • Jumping to Conclusions – putting words into the “speaker’s mouth”; assuming you know what the speaker is going to say before she or he has finished speaking.
  • Focusing on Delivery and Personal Appearance – judging people by the way they look or speak, and not listening to what they say.

And so on, and so on…

Your Task (Part 2)

Part 1

  1. Review the chapter.
  2. Respond to the following questions:
    • Do you have any of these barriers to listening? Please explain. 
    • Do you experience other barriers that prevent you from being an effective communicator? Please explain. 
    • Would you describe yourself as an effective or ineffective listener? Please explain.

Part 2

  1. Respond to two classmates’ discussion board posts.
  2. Focus on what you learned from their post that explains the relationship between interpersonal communication and personal branding.

These are the questions we will discuss this week and reflect on throughout our journeys; and by the end of the journey you should have a better sense of who you are, what you want out of life–both personally, socially, and professionally, and how to communicate more effectively to get it. The quality of our life depends significantly on our communication skills; so the time we invest in improving our communication skills is time well spent.

Discussion Board Posting Instructions

In order to successfully post to the Discussion Board and interact with your peers, refer to the following pages which contain step-by-step tutorials and discussion board guidelines.

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