Listening Exercise for Communications 101

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1) This conversation took place at 1:30am at Shannon’s apartment, one of my friends. The two participants were myself and Shannon, with me questioning her about a topic of interest for both of us. The two listening skills I employed during this time were to Ask Questions and Avoid Emotional Involvement.

2) The topic I chose to question Shannon about was of a personal nature and would make it very difficult for me to stay emotionally objective. I did this on purpose with an interest into my own reactions involving my communication with her. I also had a personal goal in regards to the information I gained from this conversation and my abilities to retain the information and use it effectively. The context I used was to question her in detail about her likes, dislikes, experience, and abstract ideas involving intimate physical activities. I formatted the conversation similar to an interview, with questions coming in quick succession, using only minimal encouragers and paraphrasing as feedback.

3) I found during the first half of the conversation that my efforts not only succeeded, but exceeded my expectations. Asking a large amount of questions with only enough feedback to make my friend comfortable prompted her to explain more, giving me more time to listen and gain insight into the subject matter as she viewed it. I was able to find out a veritable wealth of pertinent information, including many details and answers not related to the original question. My emotional involvement stayed fairly neutral during the first half, allowing me to retain and understand how she felt about the different questions without adding a personal bias to the answers. However, during the later portion of the interview, I noticed that I began to find more attraction in her answers as related to my own interests. I began spending almost an equal amount of time giving feedback, compared to earlier in the interview where I did little talking other than information gathering. Not...
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