Do men hear differently to women??

​​Do men and women hear differently?


Our ears are made not for hearing, but for listening.  Listening is an active skill, whereas hearing is passive, listening is something that we have to work at — it’s a relationship with sound. And yet it’s a skill that none of us are taught. For example, have you ever considered that there are listening positions, places you can listen from? Here are two of them. Reductive listening is listening “for.” It reduces everything down to what’s relevant and it discards everything that’s not relevant. Men typically listen reductively. So he’s saying, “I’ve got this problem.” He’s saying, “Here’s your solution. Thanks very much. Next.” That’s the way blokes talk, right guys???! 🙂

On the other hand, Expansive listening is listening “with”, not listening “for.” It’s got no destination in mind — it’s just enjoying the journey. Women typically listen expansively. If you look at women conversing, they will have eye contact, be facing each other, possibly both talking at the same time. (Yip, I know!!)  Boys, if you get nothing else out of reading this, practice expansive listening, and you can transform your relationships.  


Alison Chiam is an Audiologist, Artist and Educator. ​She is an Independent Audiologist in Private Practice and is Principal Audiologist at Jervis Bay Hearing Centre (NSW).  Her speciality areas include Hearing rehabilitation, Tinnitus and Sound Intolerance.  At the International Tinnitus Seminar in Brazil 2011 she was part of a team who was won the Ted Vernon prize for their ground-breaking work on Tinnitus and Hypercusis

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