Listening is a virtue. It shows a lot about your character and personality. It might be perceived as something straightforward and quite simple, but it is not so. Often we end up being impatient or impolite when someone is speaking by trying to put across our point. This behavior, although it seems trivial, however, informal settings can have a huge impact, whether you are at your workplace or at an interview.
We all love to talk about ourselves, whether it’s about our work or hobby or life in general. But when it comes to becoming a good listener, we often find it hard to concentrate and have the necessary patience.
To help you discover the art of listening and empower you with this virtue, here is a list of ways to help you!
- Try to pay attention to what the other person is saying very carefully.
- Attempt to respond to the speaker in a way that will encourage him to continue speaking.
- Put an effort to give the speaker your undivided attention and acknowledge the message.
- Use your body language and gestures to show that you are engaged.
- Ask questions to clarify.
- Don’t interrupt the speaker with counter-arguments.
- Treat the person who is speaking in a way that is both respectful and empathetic.
- Be aware of your surroundings.
- Don’t get distracted easily.
- Think carefully before responding.
- Always try to wait to put in your input.
- Avoid jumping into conclusions.
- To be a good listener needs you to be gentle and patient, even if you feel like you know the topic.
- Put yourself in the speaker’s shoes before reacting or being impolite. Practice being respectful.
- Being a good listener needs you to put in the necessary effort and positive reinforcements.
- Encourage the person to elaborate on the topic to show your interest.
- Don’t start assuming things.
- Avoid being judgemental.
- If someone is talking about personal topics, try to be considerate.
- Let the person know that this is a safe space, and they can be comfortable talking about anything.
- Don’t leave in the middle of a conversation; be polite enough to wait for the speaker to finish.
- Note down any questions you might have and ask them at the end.
- It is okay to have different opinions, so remind yourself of this when someone is speaking.
- Don’t just hear, listen for real!
In the words of Diogenes Laërtius, “We have two ears and one mouth, so we should listen more than we say.” With the right amount of effort and diligence, you can become a better listener in no time!