People who listen well do well. They do well in most every area of their life. They do especially well in their relationships. Whether it’s professional or personal relationships you’ll be more approachable when you make the effort to listen to others intently.
Here are some ways that listening well can help build and maintain relationships.
When you listen well, it shows the other person that you care about their thoughts and feelings. This can help build trust in the relationship, as the other person feels heard and understood. Many times when someone asks for help the only “help” they need is for someone to listen to them. Really listen.
That’s why focused, active listening is often one of the kindest things you can do for someone. All it takes is an open heart, a good ear, and an investment of time.
Good listening skills can help prevent misunderstandings by ensuring that you have a clear understanding of what the other person is saying. This can help you avoid jumping to conclusions or making assumptions based on incomplete information. If your reply to what another person says is “yes but” then it’s likely you weren’t completely listening to them. It’s probable that you were at least partially planning your reply while they were still talking.
Listening well requires you to put yourself in the other person’s shoes and see things from their perspective. This can enhance your empathy for them and help you better understand their feelings and experiences. Empathy is a skill that can be developed through practice. Empathy is vital to relationships with people who are different than you because once you understand their emotions and life experiences you’ll find you have far less need to judge them.
Active listening is an effective tool for resolving conflicts. It allows both parties to express their feelings and concerns in a supportive environment. By listening well, you can work together to find common ground and come up with solutions that meet everyone’s needs.
Good listening skills help deepen your connection with the other person. It shows them that you value their thoughts and feelings. This can lead to a stronger and more meaningful relationship over time.
We all know that listening well is an essential skill for building and maintaining healthy relationships. By taking the time to truly listen to others, you can build trust. You reduce misunderstandings. You enhance empathy. You resolve conflicts, and even stop them before they start. You strengthen your connections with others in very significant ways.
Listening is a skill you can develop over time. Funny thing is, it’s a very challenging skill to learn while holding a cell phone in your hand. It’s almost like a cell phone is Kryptonite to listening skills. So the first two steps to become a better listener are one, find the off button on your cell phone. Two, use it.
Not only will you be a better listener, you’ll be amazed at how many other positive differences that will make in your life too.
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