Communication (Photo credit: P Shanks)
One of the key factors in good communicating is the ability to be a good listener.
We all feel the need to be understood, we like when others listen and sympathise with us, because it helps us to clarify issues in our minds and boosts our confidence making it easier to communicate our thoughts. It just feels good to have someone that takes their time to listen. But when we feel the other person is not interested or receptive to what we want to say, we immediately shut ourselves and keep inside whatever it is that we would like to share. That’s a sad thing to happen and we should always be willing to learn and to go the extra mile to listen to others. We all need each other at one time or another, and who knows? You might be their last resort, the one they really trust to help them find a solution to their problem or get some sort of encouragement inspiration or advice that can greatly influence their life for the better.
Being a good listener is a priceless gift that we all have, but that is not developed to its full potential in many of us, sad to say.
When somebody is trying to communicate something to us, we should just listen, not only with our ears but also with our heart and really t make the effort to put ourselves in the other person’s shoes, but more often than not, instead of paying attention to what the person is trying to communicate, we are already formulating in our minds the answers we are going to give them, and because of that we don’t really listen therefore we are not able to understand the person, and in many cases making the wrong assumptions and judgments, ending up giving the wrong advice or worse than that making the other person feeling misunderstood, discouraged or judged.
The good news is that we all have the ability to be good listeners, we are all gifted with all that it takes to be a blessing to others, we just need to perfect our gift of listening, practice it until we are good at it.
These are few things we can do to help us be better listeners:
1) Listen without judgment; keep your mind focus on what the other person is saying to you
2) When you are tempted to give a quick answer, just silently and slowly count to ten. By doing this you will learn to be more in tune with the other person and at the same time hear more clearly what they are trying to communicate to you.
3) Make sure that your focus is always on the other person not yourself, or the good advice you are eager to deliver.
4) Make it a point to listen intently to the other person, instead of formulating answers in your mind.
5) Do not interrupt, wait until the person is finished talking before you have your say.
6) When giving your answer, don’t always follow what looks like common sense or logic, instead follow your intuition, your intuition is the first thing that comes to your mind, it does not seem logic, but it feels right, and it is usually right. It will come to you when the person has finished talking.
These are just a few things we can do, but there are so much more that we can learn. Let’s all try to be better listeners and use the ability we have to be a blessing to others and in return it will also be a blessing to ourselves, because there is nothing more fulfilling and rewarding, than being able to inspire and encourage someone else.
More than often by being a blessing to others, we realize that as we give we also receive and learn things about ourselves, things we haven’t thought about before, and at the same time discover hidden gifts and talents we did ‘t know we had.