apprendre à écouter et non pas à s'écouter


Senior Member
France, French
"S'écouter" in French has another meaning than just the litteral meaning of "listening to yourself"...
It means something like to be too soft on yourself, or too self-centered, or complacent.

Here's the context where I'm encoutering this expression right now - (I find the whole paragraph a real challenge to translate into English, it's so colloquial):

"C'est un travail de longue haleine de ne rien se pardonner, de se remettre en question à chaque situation, d'améliorer son comportement et d'apprendre à écouter et non pas à s'écouter !"

"It's a long-term job not to forgive yourself for anything, to reassess and question yourself in each and every situation, to improve your behavior, to learn how to listen, instead of being completely self-centered!"

The problem is that you totally lose in translation the play on words that you have in French with "écouter" (listen to others) as opposed to "s'écouter" be complacent...

Any suggestion is welcome!
  • Ami6

    Senior Member
    France, French
    Thanks, I guess I was just making it too complicated, sometimes the simpler... the better!


    New Member
    However how could I remake the sentance like that:

    (si) Le sourd ne fera jamais rien; mais il faudra qu'il s'écoute

    The use of 'si' in the sentence above is obligatory6, so is it correct to remake it like:

    "Si le sourd ne s'écoute pas, il ne fera jamais rien"


    "Si le sourd s'écoute, il ne fera jamais rien"

    But how could I understand both?

    Please, help
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