Ask the Expert – Deep Listening Skills

Listening is a critical act of understanding others and helping them feel heard. The next time you have a conversation with someone, try practicing deep listening skills to fully understand what they’re saying and to make them feel heard and valued. Here are some tips from JED Senior Advisor, Dr. Janis Whitlock, to help develop deep listening skills.


Janis Whitlock, Ph.D., M.P.H., JED senior advisor, has worked in the area of adolescent and young adult mental health, resilience and wellbeing for over 30 years. She is dedicated to bridging science, practice, and lived experience wisdom in ways that inform, enhance and support the human capacity to thrive. She has experience as a frontline provider and program developer and, for the past two decades, as a researcher, educator, author, and public speaker in these and related areas. As the founder and director of the Cornell Research Program on Self-Injury and Recovery and the co-founder of the International Society for the Study of Self-Injury, she has deep expertise in areas of self-injury and related mental health challenges, including suicide, depression and anxiety. She has also studied and written about connectedness, resilience, the role of social media in mental health and prevention, and sexual health.

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