The best time to learn good listening skills is probably during childhood. It is best to grow up knowing how to listen rather than trying to learn how as an adult. By that time, some bad communication habits have developed and we do not know how to actually listen. Here are some things than can help us to become a better listener.
Some people keep talking and monopolize every conversation. No one else can get a word in, even if they tried. In order to have good listening skills, we need to let others have a chance to talk and then actually listen to what they have to say. This is difficult for a "talker" to do. Sometimes they are afraid to take a breath for fear someone else will fill in the gap.
When we ask questions during a conversation, it helps others to be able to join in. Ask what others are interested in and give them a chance to talk. Look directly at them and actually listen to what they are saying.
Part of good listening skills is to let the other person know that they have been heard. Repeat back to them what they just said or ask a clarifying question. When the other person is chatting, refrain from trying to finish their sentence. Give them the time that they need.
Most of us get used to doing several things at the same time, including trying to listen. Complete attention is needed. Block everything else out in order to have good listening skills. Concentrate on what is being said and nothing else.
Practice at being a good listener. We need to listen to the world around us. Just sit still for a minute and listen to every sound. There may be machines, birds, cars, running water, music playing, wind, a train or dogs barking. All of these noises are happening all of the time but we get used to them and pay no attention. We can also zone out when we are listening to people.
We should not pretend to be interested when someone else is talking. Good listening skills involve actually being interested in the other person and what they are actually saying as they express themselves. We can fake it, but it will not seem sincere. We need to pay attention to the person who is talking and try to feel what they are feeling.
Stop talking and stop thinking about other things are key to good listening.
Good suggestions...I need to get my kids started on this now!
Wonderful tips to a good listener. So often people do not listen so need to read your smart advice.h5
This is really great advice. I had some training for a counseling position, and asking questions was one of the first things we learned!
Nice list of ways to develop good listening skills. Some thing that I need to work on. I like to talk and sometimes it does get in the way of listening. Thanks for the list.
select one here...