Do you ever find yourself developing your answer in your head before someone speaks? This often ensures that you missed part of the message the other person was communicating. Do you really listen when others speak?
Listening is definitely not the same thing as hearing. Just because you are hearing, doesn’t mean you are listening.
So how do you become an effective listener?
- Avoid Distractions
- Sometimes us “over achievers”, you know those type A personalities, well…this will come as a HUGE shock but we don’t have a whole lot of patience. So in order to be an effective listener, we have to slow it down.
- You have to avoid distractions, you cannot multi task and be a good listener. If you are reading e-mail or on your smart phone while someone is talking, you are not being a good listener.
- Finding connections with other people is a gift. Show them you empathize with them. Consider the quote”walk a mile in my shoes” and how you can try to relate to them.
- Use verbal and non verbal communication to help confirm your understanding. If in person, lean in and keep eye contact. If virtual, use your tone and affirming words.
- Questions can help to confirm understanding. So let the other person know you are hearing them.
Because listening is not the same thing as hearing, be patient, be engaged, be understanding and acknowledge the person who is speaking to you.
be inspired, be empowered, be BOLD
Make it an amazing day!