What is Active listening according to Carl Rogers?

The current blogspot will be based on the question “what is active listening Carl Rogers?”. We will discuss active listening as per Carl Rogers view and also learn the various aspects of active listening that were specific to Carl Rogers theory.

What is Active listening according to Carl Rogers?

Active listening according to Carl Rogers is done as an active process. Carl Rogers discouraged the idea of active listening being a passive process. Carl Rogers believed that the process of active listening needs to be done in an active manner and with a greater sensitivity. He believed that empathy and attention to the client during the process of active listening are two main factors that need to be paid a greater consideration to. 

Carl Rogers’ approach to active listening is different in direction from that of the other people. Many people consider active listening to be a process that is executed automatically and naturally. Hence it is believed that active listening is a process that is natural and requires no conscious efforts. 

Contrary to this, Carl Rogers believed that active listening is an active process that needs to be intentionally taken care of during any communication. Rogers considered active listening to be of equal importance as that of delivering a message that needs to be effectively framed. Rogers believed active listening is a conscious effort where a person needs to attend to the speaker well and make sense of whatever is being communicated.

What can be achieved through active listening?

Active listening is a communication process that makes us change the way other people behave and modify our behavior as well. Research evidence and clinical studies have revealed that active listening is sensitive listening that is crucial to personality change among individuals and group development. 

Through active listening, Carl Rogers suggests that we can easily bring change in other people’s attitude towards their own selves and towards other people. Active listening can also change people and help them modify their beliefs and philosophy about life.

As a result of active listening, people tend to be more open to experience, they act wisely, they appear to be less defensive, they are not much resistant to change and they are less athouritatrian.

Through active listening, members of a certain group are more compassionate towards each other. People in a group appear to be less argumentative and more ready to incorporate other people’s point of view. They feel less criticised, and are open to share their true feelings and thoughts.

Active listening tends to build strong connections between the listener and the speaker. It helps develop a mutual trust and respect between the listener and the speaker. Through active listening, Carl Rogers believed that interpersonal relations can be greatly strengthened.Hence Carl Rogers viewed active listening as a growth process as it aims to bring about and foster change in people.

What are the Problems with Active Listening ?

Active listening may seem to be an easy task but it is quite difficult to achieve. Inorder to be an active listener, we often need to change our own attitude. Active listening is learned through consistent practice. Active listening becomes a habit gradually and often it is difficult to achieve.

Active listening requires a continuous interest that shows to the speaker that we are sincerely interested in the communication process. Often it may occur that we tend to only make a pretense of interest in the speaker. As a result it may happen that the speaker figures out and loses his interest in sharing his true feelings with us.

There is also a strong element of personal risk associated with active listening. We often miss being our true selves during the process of active listening.  We tend to be busy with showing compassion and empathy for the speaker and as a result we end up seeing the world from his eyes. We tend to threaten our own existence by opening up to experience the world as per the experience of the speaker while being aware of our own identity as being separate from that of the speakers.

As humans we are often trained to see the world and to listen from the environment whatever we want to hear and see. It is often not only unpleasant but also difficult to learn to see things and listen to things to draw meaning and inferences out of whatever is being shared and to portray a sense of interest in the speaker. Being interested genuinely in the speaker’s issues and problems requires a lot of mental and physical energy.

What are the 5 tenets of Active listening Carl Rogers?

According to Carl Rogers, there are 5 tents of Active Listening. These include :

  • Pay attention
  • Be involved and use open body language
  • Reflect on what is being said
  • Dont Judge
  • Respond appropriately

Pay attention

Active listening requires being attentive to the words and body gestures of the speaker. Giving undivided attention to the speaker so that no information is missed out and the speaker knows that he is being heard. In order to pay attention, try to maintain eye contact, be free of any preconceived notions and focus on the intent of the message that the other person is trying to communicate.

Be involved and use open body language

It is imperative to have an open body language when we are using the process of active listening. Open body posture enables the speaker to be more direct and more verbal.  The speaker feels being more  informal and thus feels the ease to say whatever he feels like saying without being defensive or feeling offended. 

Being involved in active listening is dependent on using adequate facial expressions, a pleasant  tone of voice and encouraging words that appreciate the speaker to share more of his experiences.

Reflect on what is being said

Active listening according to Carl Rogers requires reflecting upon the message that is being conveyed by the speaker. This can help us to not involve any of our perceptions or preconceived notions into the process of active listening. Hence it is paramount to use reflexion technique and clarify your understanding of the speaker’s message during the process of active listening.

Dont Judge

Humans often dislike being judged. It is often difficult during the process of active listening to not judge the person having ideas and opinions that we disagree with. However, staying unbiased during the process of active listening can help us stay neutral and prevent hostility.

Respond appropriately

During the process of active listening, Carl Rogers believed that responding appropriately to the speaker makes the speaker feel that he is being understood and respected. Responding through open body posture and using non verbal body cues along with verbal gestures is recommended during the process of active listening.

Conclusion

The current blogspot was based on the question “what is active listening according to carl rogers?”. We learned the various aspects of active listening as per the views of carl rogers. We also discussed the five rules of active listening according to Carl rogers.

Frequently asked questions : Active listening Carl Rogers

What are Carl Rogers’ five rules for active listening?

Following are the Carl Rogers 5 rules for active listening:

  • Pay Attention
  • Be Involved & Use Open Body Language
  • Reflect On What’s Being Said
  • Don’t Judge
  • Respond Appropriately

What are the 3 A’s of active listening?

The 3 A’s of active listening are :

  • Attitude
  •  Attention
  • Adjustment

What did Carl Rogers say about active listening?

Carl Rogers believed active listening is a conscious and intentional process that needs to be carried out actively and effectively to draw meaning from the speaker’s message.

Citations

http://files.teachingjedi.webnode.com/200000004-6f61f705bf/ActiveListening_RogersFarson.pdf

https://www.businessanalystlearnings.com/business-analyst-career/2017/10/17/5-tenets-of-active-listening
https://www.grin.com/document/270554

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