If you ever wonder why certain people goes to this one person to rant or just to let their emotions out, you could say it’s from trust. Yes, confiding in a person you really trust is truly important as well but the main thing they keep going back to the same person besides they might offer good advice is the fact they are good listeners.
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You know how sometimes people don’t want a solution but rather a listening aid for their problems may it be from stress at work, relationships or family matters, all they need is for someone to value them through the art of listening.
I had my fair share of wanting people to listen to me when I have an issue, but then they turn the other cheek and it always upsets me even more than I already have. Some of the examples if you want to be a better listener for your loved ones is; learn to not look, reply or engage in your phone when they are talking, constantly looking at your watch or even looking distracted or interrupting them. All of that will make them feel like their issue is boring. No one likes when that happens. Being unheard results in feelings of disconnection and loneliness. Essentially, human beings just wants to be understood.
Being in a psychology major as well, it has taught me to be a better listener and cater to people’s problem. For example, while in college I was exposed to a subject where you have to learn to speak in a counseling session manner and through that course, I’ve figured that you can know so much about people when you start listening to them. Ever since then, whenever a friend comes to me to pour their feelings out, I’ve adopted this lifestyle of speaking less and listening more. It works wonders, I tell you.
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To be a good listener, it takes a little adjustment that you’ll adapt to it in no time. Just practice the no-no’s I spoke earlier and you’ll be in the right path. Here are some tips.
1. Practice Active Listening
So, what active listening does not only are you quiet most of the way but it’s also putting the situation about them. For example, active listening requires question be thrown to them but in a subtle way. Like, “Are you saying that _______”, “What I heard you say was ______”, “Did you mean that _______.” This would bring you a deeper understanding of the issue the person came up to you and be able to help them by feeling good even though you were only just listening.
2. No Judgement
It’s one thing to listen to them but it’s another thing when you judge them. No one likes to be judged on what they are going through. Puts a negative circle on the whole thing and in turn, you’ll be labelled as the narrow minded one. Always make it your goal to be as open minded as you can.
3. Make Eye Contact
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Showing that you are paying full attention to them can be done through the power of eye contact. If you don’t look at the person that you’re speaking with, it shows you almost don’t care about him or her feelings. Even if you are listening while looking away, it’ll distract them from ever opening up completely.
When you restate, in your own words, what the speaker is saying, you prove that you’re listening carefully – after all, you wouldn’t be able to repeat anything if you weren’t paying attention.
5. Non-verbal Communication is Key
Nonverbal communication is the process of sending and receiving messages without using words, either spoken or written. Also called manual language. About 60-70% of our communication involves non-verbal. It’s important to know this just so you see whether to encourage the speaker to open up, be supportive or many more. Observation is also important.
Try this method and see all the difference you can make when it comes to communicating.