How to Improve your Listening Skills

Listening is the term used to accurately hear what someone is saying and be able to interpret their words properly. In order to fully communicate with another person you must have excellent listening skills or else you end up being someone who simply is unable to communicate fully. While many feel they listen perfectly fine, there actually are some ways we all struggle with fully listening to someone during a conversation and today we will share some ways you can improve your listening skills so that you become a more effective listener.

How to Improve Your Listening Skills

Get Relaxed

The first step to truly listen to another person is to get into a relaxed state of mind. Take some deep breaths and prepare to fully open your ears and your mind to what this person is saying to you.

Do Not Speak

When the other person is talking to you it is important to not speak at all, you must learn to remain quiet while they finish what they have to say. Speaking is considered interrupting and is certainly not practicing good listening skills.

Control Body Language

A good listener will not eye roll, start fidgeting or making various body movements as a direct result of what the person is saying. You must control all body language that will deter the person from finishing the conversation with you.

And Be Responsive To Theirs

Staying in control of your body language is one thing, but reading body language is another altogether. Whether you’re dating or speaking to your employer about a potential raise, they will give you plenty of clues without actually saying anything. Listen to their gestures as well as their speech, and your interactions will be significantly enriched.

Have Empathy

The key to being a good listener is to learn to get in touch with empathy. You may not fully understand why this person is upset or talking about the subject in such a manner, all you have to do is learn to have empathy for how they feel regarding this discussion.

How to Improve your Listening Skills - Have Empathy

Practice Patience

Some people will take long pauses in between sentences; do not be rushed to speak at each pause. Learn to practice a deeper level of patience to fully master your listening skills. Learn when a pause is the end of the discussion or just the person thinking how to say something.

Avoid Judgement

Refrain from all judgement when conversing with someone, if you are truly listening to this person then your thoughts should be on a polite, empathetic, productive response as opposed to judgment.

Make Eye Contact

This is something that has to have a good balance, you won’t want to stare down the person and make them feel incredibly uncomfortable. You should remain in eye contact with them periodically throughout the listening process; this shows them you are listening.

Make Mental Notes

As a means to ensure you are not interrupting the person in mid conversation, learn to make mental notes about your responses. Think thoughts inside of your mind as opposed to immediately engaging your thoughts while the person is still talking.

How to Improve your Listening Skills - Make Mental Notes

Do Not Daze Out

We all have some words or thoughts that simply make us doze off and we miss part of what the person is saying to us. Be aware of your thoughts and make sure you are not dozing off and missing a portion of the conversation.

Be Kind in Your Reply

When the person is done speaking to you, be kind in your reply. Get in touch with your inner empathy and learn to speak in a level tone. Good listening skills are combined with good response skills, be sure to use all of these tips as a means to have better listening skills.

Let’s discuss: What do you think need improving when it comes to listening? 

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