Months ago I wrote a blog post about the art of listening. Listening is an art, whether we realize listening is an art or not. A two-way conversation does not constitute you are understood or the other person is actually listening to you.
Too often we may find ourselves physically present in conversations, but we are not actively present in the moment. In actuality, we are often emotionally checked out of the conversation.
There is a distinct difference in listening and hearing. Listening with the intent to understand the context of the message is more than hearing audibly what a person is saying. Inasmuch as listening does not always involve understanding. For this reason, listening to understand is crucial. While listening, if you fail to gain an understanding, ask questions for clarification.
The next time you find yourself in a conversation try being present in the moment.