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Three Rules of Silent Listening at Sunonaa

At Sunonaa, we build an open space for our listeners to share with us freely. We provide our listeners with an empathetic ear and a safe environment by following these three fundamental rules during our sessions:

1. To bear a non-judgmental attitude: At Sunonaa, we assertively believe in maintaining a non-judgmental attitude at all times to provide a safe and healthy environment to our listeners. This also means keeping our respective biases/ reactions/ assumptions completely aside and out of the session. During our training and interactions with our volunteers, we out in a lot of emphasis on not judging our listeners during the session and even in post-session period.

2. To not ask questions during the session: We believe in not asking too many questions to the listeners as at times throwing a question to the listener breaks his/her chain of thoughts. We firmly and wholeheartedly believe in allowing space for our listener to express himself/herself without adding any hindrances and barriers. However, sometimes the listener needs a couple of questions as nudges to express himself/herself better, thus, in such cases, we recommend our volunteers to ask open-ended questions over closed-ended questions. As close-ended questions hardly provide the opportunity to the listener to share further or open up.

3. To not give out advice to our listeners: Often as individuals, we pre-assume that the listener is looking for advice from us, whereas he/she wants to be simply heard and express his/her feelings, emotions, situations, circumstances, experiences, etc. So at Sunonaa, we refrain from giving any kind of advice to our listeners until and unless we hear the clear words from the listener "can you suggest/advice." We have observed that allowing individuals to express themselves often leads them to discover the best advice on their own. Hence, we believe in encouraging our listeners to find solutions for themselves while we act as guides.

These three rules act as a guiding light to all our sessions and we hold them at the highest rank throughout. Sunonaa has been able to provide a platform of open and healthy space to the listeners since 2017. We have been able to encourage many individuals to open up freely to us by facilitating a mindful listening space. So if you are interested to know how this works, feel free to register for a session here.

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