Listening vs. Hearing
Listening may be our most fundamental communication and learning skill, yet it is perhaps the most commonly neglected one. The main reason for this oversight is that a listening problem usually goes undetected, since listening doesn't manifest itself directly. Also, it is often confused with hearing.
Listening may be our most fundamental communication and learning skill, yet it is perhaps the most commonly neglected one.
There is a major distinction between hearing and listening. While hearing is the passive, involuntary function of sound perception, listening is active and voluntary. When well developed or well trained, the listening function allows us to focus on the sound information we need and leave out, or protect ourselves from sounds that are unnecessary. Though the vestibular function of the inner ear, this focusing ability of the ear and brain has far reaching implications on spatial awareness and the control of body movement leading to enhanced self-awareness and self-control.
For these reasons listening is at the base of most skills involved in communication, verbal as well as non-verbal, socialization, language and learning.