more often than not our anger at others is about us, not them. There is such a thing as righteous anger, but it usually belongs to God; our version is usually contempt or arrogance. Our anger wants to change and control others, making them into people who have an uncanny resemblance to us. Listening offers the sacred gift of letting others be themselves. We let them have their own thoughts, feel their own feelings and believe their own beliefs without attacking them or running their words through our own critical filters. We aim to understand them on their terms, not ours. Listening for understanding is slow. A good listener believes in taking the long route. That’s why most of us don’t do it. If I make a quick judgment and dispense some fast advice, then I can move on to the next thing. The truth is that your listening style reveals your lifestyle. If your life is saturated with busyness, hurry and distraction, then your listening will be scattered and rushed. Listening for understanding cannot be a mere checkbox on your to-do list. It requires your attention, concentration and observational skill.
— Adam McHugh, The Listening Life