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One Small Change: The benefits of Mindful Listening

"Mindful Listening helps quiet our internal thoughts as well as background distractions," says Enid.

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — For the month of March, 13 ON YOUR SIDE's One Small Change series is focusing on mental wellness, something that's taken a hit for many during this year-long pandemic.

Mindful listening is an excellent way to improve communication and relationships, which are so important to mental wellness.

Enid Gaddis is the director of equity and inclusion for Arbor Circle and a licensed professional counselor working with children and families. She explains that mindful listening is "listening without distraction. Mindful Listening can help to improve focus and enhance the quality of our relationships."

"Mindful Listening helps quiet our internal thoughts as well as background distractions," says Enid.

Here are some things you can do to practice mindful listening:

  • Put cell phones away and silence notifications to help eliminate distractions as well as consider the time and location of a conversation.
  • If you find yourself being distracted or even interrupting, take a deep breath, reset and re-engage.

Arbor Circle provides comprehensive counseling and support services that enhance the emotional health and well-being of individuals and families throughout West Michigan.

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