Be a better listener

If you can be a good listener to yourself, you can be a better listener to others. As David Rome, writing on mindful.org, explains:

…being good at listening to others requires the ability to listen to yourself. If you can’t recognize your own beliefs and opinions, needs and fears, you won’t have enough inner space to really hear anyone else.”

Here’s a few pointers on how to be a good listener to yourself and others:

  1. Before you start a conversation, ask yourself how you’re feeling right now—is there anything going on in your mind that might get in the way of you being truly present for the other person? If the answer is “yes,” decide if it needs to be dealt with first or whether it can wait until later.
  2. Next, as best you can, set an intention to listen fully and openly, with empathy, interest and mindfulness. Good listening means mindful listening!
  3. Use friendly, open-ended questions to clarify your understanding and ask for more information. Acknowledge the other person’s point of view (as David says, acknowledging is not agreeing) before introducing your own ideas, requests or feelings.

Read more tips in David’s article…



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