October, 2013


Welcome to the monthly review mail for October. And, good news is that I’m on time this month! And more good news if you missed my announcement last month, is that the
2014 Eigo Techo is now available, here’s the Rakuten URL if you’re interested to know more: http://item.rakuten.co.jp/eigo/c/0000000157/

Also, I’m thinking about returning to the “Daily Word mini email”. Up until 2012 I was sending a daily email with the word of the day, but for 2013 as my dad was sick, I changed to this monthly format. Since he passed away in August, I have more time so if you are interested in receiving the daily email again, please let me know. You can email me at chris@newleaves.jp or reach me on Facebook. If enough people are interested then I will change back to the daily (or weekly?) format. Let me know!

So, onto October’s topic…

October’s topic is “Try to understand. Then to be understood. まず相手を理解し、次に理解してもらう努力をせよ”. This topic reminds me of the Stephen Covey book, “The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People” and Habit no. 5 is “Seek first to understand, then to be understood.” We spend many years learning to speak when we are young babies and children. Then throughout school and childhood, we learn to read and write. However, no one really teaches us to listen, right? When you were at school did you have any lessons on “how to listen”? I’m sure you had English “listening lessons” but I bet these weren’t “how to listen” lessons, right?

Covey says that most people listen “autobiographically”. In other words, we tend to listen to people and understand what they are saying based on our own experiences. Instead of truly listening to what the person is saying we tend to do one of four things: Evaluate (judge, then agree or disagree), Probe (ask questions, based on your own experience), Advise (give advice or solutions), and Interpret (analyze the person’s behavior based on your own experiences.) When you do any of these things as you are “listening”, you are deciding what the other person wants to communicate to you before they have really finished communicating. Did you recognize yourself in any of those four ways of listening? For me, I think I tend to “probe” a lot, but I also think I am a pretty good listener – mostly because of my years of working as an English coach. It’s very important for me to listen to what my clients are saying! How about you, would you consider yourself a good listener? Why or why not?

And as always a quick review of the monthly words.

What five words were new for you?

What one word really excited you? (I mean what word were you glad to learn?)

Create a sentence using your favorite word from the month.

And if you don’t have the Eigo Techo nearby, here’s the monthly word list:

October 1 understanding 理解
October 2 values 価値
October 3 response 反応
October 4 objective目的
October 5 empathy 共感
October 6 effort 努力
October 7 glance ちらりと見る
October 8 evaluate 評価する
October 9 compromise 妥協する
October 10 explain説明する
October 11 ignore 無視する
October 12 save 救う
October 13 reason with someone 理を説く
October 14 frustration 欲求不満
October 15 guarantee 保証
October 16 leadership リーダーシップ
October 17 mix-up 混乱
October 18 regret 後悔
October 19 warning 警告
October 20 consequence 結果
October 21 obvious 明らかな
October 22 proactive 先を見越した
October 23 reactive 反発する
October 24 supportive 支援する
October 25 patient 我慢強い
October 26 diligent 勤勉な
October 27 excellent 素晴らしい
October 28 appeal 頼む
October 29 offer 提示する
October 30 minimize 最小限に抑える
October 31 repair 修繕する

See you at the end of November.