Ever had an experience where someone really listens to your essence and leaves you feeling deeply acknowledged and seen?
‘Active listening’ is where someone receives you without judgement, without working out what they are going to say next, really getting themselves out of the way so that the presence is fully with you. At the same time, the listener is not in a passive role. They are ‘active’ and have a clear responsibility to absorb and receive the words which are spoken without their own agenda. The core aim is to listen in a way that allows the listener to grasp the facts and feelings in what they hear, leaving you feeling profoundly understood and enabling you to solve problems and move forward.
Benefits of Being Actively Listened to
Of course not everyone will see all of us, all of the time. But to have a trusted coach, or a friend or family member that can hold an integral space for you, someone who will be your committed listener with a quality that makes your soul feel seen, is one of the kindest and most transformational gifts and can leave you revitalised re-energised, realigned, and back in your flow.
Whenever someone has given the gift of active listening to me in this way, it has left me with a deep sense of expansion. More traditionally ‘active listeners’ are sourced through coaching, therapy, or a sympathetic ear. But sometimes it has happened to me unexpectedly like a random act of God, just when I’ve needed it. Sometimes when I’ve performed to an audience of complete strangers, sharing my soul, painfully alive, teetering on the edge of terror and majesty all at the same time, I am welcomed there in my full vulnerability, and I expand.
To be witnessed like this, to be seen fully with all that I love and loathe in myself, and then have it welcomed exactly as it is, is where I have been able to reconnect and realign to a deep intimacy with myself and what I really need and want.
Being an Active Listener
As a life coach, holding space in this way for others is a beautiful balance of listening acutely to someone’s essence and supporting them to see and hear the difference between their inner voice guidance and their critic. Helping someone to clarify and own the value of their ideas and transform fear, doubt and resistance into natural confidence and charisma is one of the greatest privileges.