Listening is one of the hardest, but most valuable skills to learn. If you want to become a better listener, you need to try these active listening tips.
Have you ever experienced somebody who always dominates a conversation? They constantly give their opinion and talk about themselves. How did this make you feel?
For most, this is a terrible situation that we have all been a part of. However, if you want to become a better listener, you need to avoid being this person. Unfortunately, it is not always that easy.
You need some guardrails to help you with your active listening skills. Try out these proven tips today!
Benefits of Active Listening
Active listening is a skill we all need to learn. Learning how to open our ears and not our mouths is something that will benefit us greatly.
When we listen to others, we have the opportunity to learn. The best way to learn is to listen. When we listen to others, we can expand our minds and make ourselves better.
Think of all the amazing things you can learn when you open your mind and ears to the knowledge of others. By actively participating by listening to others, you will become a more informed person.
Furthermore, by listening you can make others feel better. One of the most loving things that you can do in life is listen to others. Listen to your spouse or your friends and watch what happens.
They will feel valued and heard. Don’t you feel that way when somebody deeply listens to you?
The benefits of active listening are endless. If you want to become a better listener, try out these tips!
3 Tips to Improve Your Skills!
1. Stop Talking to Become a Better Listener
While this one might seem obvious, if you want to become a better listener, you need to stop talking. The only way for you to listen is if your mouth is closed. Like the old saying goes – “You have two ears and one month of a reason. You should listen twice as much as you talk.”
For some people, this can be difficult. Whether you grew up in a family that constantly talked over each other or you feel the need to express yourself, listening can be hard.
We get in a rhythm of how much we talk and it can be difficult to change our habits. However, if you want to be an active listener, you have to refrain from talking.
This is the first step in becoming a better listener. Stop talking and open your ears. You will be amazed by what you will learn.
2. Intent Matters – Understanding vs. Response
What do you think about when you are in conversation with another person? Are you thinking about what you are going to say next? Are you formulating your next sentence or a comeback?
This is often the intent of people when they are in a conversation. However, when you are thinking of your response, you are not truly trying to understand what the other person is saying.
There is a big difference between paying attention with the intent of understanding vs. paying attention with the intent to respond. In your next conversation, try to pay attention to what the other person is actually saying.
Ask questions to further understand what they are saying. Dive deeper to truly get at how they are feeling. Understand them at a deeper level.
When you focus on actively paying attention to what the other person is saying, you will build your skills!
3. Better Inform Your Opinion
Another benefit of paying attention more than you talk is that you will have the chance to take in all the information first. One of the best ways to form an educated opinion is to hear what others have to say.
Have you ever been in a situation where you spoke too soon? You thought you had everything figured out, but after you spoke, you regretted it?
Furthermore, this made you feel embarrassed. It is truly one of the worst feelings. However, this doesn’t have to be you!
If you really want to have an informed opinion, try listening more. You will truly be amazed how much better you can inform your opinion by listening to all of the information first.
Additionally, you will be able to incorporate the ideas of others so they also feel heard. Once you have heard the opinion of others, incorporate all the great ideas into your own.
This is a great strategy to use at work. Listen to others and then based on the information learned, form a united opinion. Use this great tip to elevate your team!
Time to Give it a Try!
Now you have the tips, it is time to put them into action. Take the leap of listening more than you talk. Active listening skills can be learned, but they need to be practiced.
It is your time to put this into action! Follow the tips outlined above and you will be on your way to listening better.
This skill is something that you can quickly lose, so make sure you keep practicing. Practice in your next conversation. Practice at work. Put in the work, and you will be rewarded!
Develop your listening skills today!
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