Hearing happens when sound waves are detected by our ears and converted into electrical signals that are sent to the brain for processing. Once they reach the brain, you decide what you want to do with them.
Hearing versus listening
Your ears are always ‘on’. Hearing is the passive act of sensing frequency vibrations created by a moving object as it disturbs particles in the air. It constantly provides us with vital information about our surroundings. When we listen, we focus attention on a specific aspect of a soundscape – it’s about taking control of our sensory experience.
Is your hearing getting in the way of your listening ability?
Listening is often referred to as a skill. That’s because it can be trained and developed. Of course, listening is much harder if your hearing isn’t functioning optimally. Hearing deteriorates with age and environmental damage. Listening becomes an effort, and that effort makes you tired.