2019 Theme “Be bold! Listen for common ground”


This year’s IDL theme is based on listening first for similarities – what we have in common. That’s what we mean by ‘listen for common ground’. Once two people have found common ground and priorities (and are surprised by the number of them), it is far easier to discuss differences, points of disagreement or conflict, in a mature and respectful way. We’ll help you to achieve this goal.


How courageous is your listening?

That’s where “be bold” enters the scene! It takes courage to listen to completely different points of view. We may perceive the vision of others as illogical, stupid or even dangerous… this blocks our comprehension.

One other aspect of courage is to be mature and confident enough to not be afraid to be confronted with different views. The idea is to not to be distracted by the first phrase or slogan we hear (eye-rolling here) – it takes critical listening to understand what is being said (and what is not) and to discern the facts from the propaganda. 

We may decide to be influenced in certain aspects by the others’ discourse, but only after having listened carefully, and having made sure that what we understand is exactly what the other wants to say.


We won’t let you down on this “wild” path!

Another brilliant and inspirational example of what is done through the world to help people finding common ground, build relationships and communities!

In 2017 TV2 Denmark Channel had a brilliant idea about how to show people that they have a lot in common despite huge apparent differences. It was called “All that we share – The Diversity Project”. Check out the video above or use this link.

This beautiful experience relates to the ILA #internationaldayoflistening theme for this year and maybe will inspire you to organize such a gathering in your community on September 19, 2019 for the 4th ILA International Day of Listening? Let us know!


The International Day of Listening (IDL) is an International Listening Association (ILA) event. That means that from now on to that special day, we’ll guide you with unique material based on the experience of ILA’s exceptional pool of researchers, writers, teachers, professional communicators and passionate listeners. You’re in good hands!

On the International Listening Association website www.listen.org/ you can get an idea of the huge amount of work that has been done by the ILA since 1979.

Become an ILA member and dig into the enormous amount of resources and documentation available. Meet friendly and knowledgeable people online and at various events, such as the Annual International Convention: https://listen.org/2020-ILA-Convention

Join the worldwide conversation on the ILA International Day of Listening September 19, 2019.

Save the date and be part of the listening movement that includes more and more associations and organizations around the world.


Hoping to hear from you soon,

Jean Francois Mathieu

Chair of the ILA International Day of Listening;

Listening Culture Designer of Leaders Today;

Music Composer


info @ internationaldayoflistening.com



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