Have you often found yourself zoning in and out of a conversation and not being able to recall what one just said? If yes, then know that you’re not alone. Many people find it difficult to keep up with a conversation and later feel guilty for not being able to concentrate. Here are some ways through which you can be a really good listener.
Practice 3 A’s of active listening
Rather than getting distracted by the smallest things, try paying attention to every minor detail. Don’t just focus on their words but carefully observe their gestures too, read their expressions and be present in the moment. Instead of looking elsewhere try to maintain good eye contact and engage with nonverbal gestures, e.g. try nodding occasionally or react to the conversations with your facial expressions. If you start zoning out again, notice it immediately and snap out of it, as the listener is supposed to look attentive and intrigued too for the other person to keep the conversation going.
Our attitude is one of the significant non-verbal factors when it comes to being a good listener, because even if we are paying attention but we have an uninterested attitude towards the speaker the conversation will lose its spark and ultimately turn dull and boring. Therefore, it is important to listen with a positive attitude and an open mind and show genuine interest in the conversation.
Adjustment is the way of adapting what the speaker says. Even if you don’t concur with the speaker you still listen with an open mind and go with the flow.
It seems quite unethical and disrespectful to cut someone while they are talking, your interruption can make them forget what they were about to say and lose their chain of thought. Keep your counterarguments, questions, or views for later, always let them complete first.
Don’t pass judgments
Even during the conversation, if you don’t agree with what the other person is saying, you need to withhold your judgments. Acknowledge that it is okay to disagree as every individual has different opinions regarding different matters, the person can still be civilized and maintain a healthy conversation.
In order to truly connect and understand where the speaker is coming from, it is essential for you to empathize with the speaker. Place yourself in their shoes and see the situation from their perspective. This will help you to be more emotionally involved in the conversation and understand what the person truly means.
Hopefully, these little approaches will help you become a better listener, a great communicator, and build strong connections with the speaker because as Brian Tracy said “Attentive listening to others lets them know that you love them and builds trust, the foundation of a loving relationship”