There are many techniques on how to become a better listener. In this post I’ll identify a few gotchas on how people fail to properly listen to another person and offer some tips to improve our listening skills. I say “our” because as I write about being better, I need to be implementing these tips myself as well!!
Gotcha #1 – When listening to a person, if you ever make a judgment from the opening statement whether or not you know what is going to be said.
Tip #1 – This will set yourself up to listen to only what you want to hear or are expecting to hear, not truly what the person is trying to tell you. If you begin to make judgment, let it go. Stop thinking about whether you agree or disagree while the person is actually talking to you in the same moment.
Gotcha #2 – As the person is talking, you’re trying to analyze the situation and give interpretations.
Tip #2 – This is a big no no because your brain is trying to add context to what you think the person means or what the person is saying. So, you’re not really listening to what they are truly saying, you’re adding your thoughts into the message!
Gotcha #3 – Don’t try to use your experiences to best understand the other person’s feelings.
Tip #3 – You cannot listen if you’re trying to incorporate what your past experiences have been and incorporating them into what you are hearing.
Take these tips on how to become a better listener and you will improve your listening skills. Don’t judge what you are hearing. Don’t analyze the situation. Don’t use your experiences. Just focus on listening to exactly what the person is saying. You will be amazed at how much clearer you are with what you are listening to, as well as the person that is talking will definitely take notice on how well you are listening to them!
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