It is said that listening skills have three basic steps, while hearing something is just in the passing. For example, if you were watching television, and you heard that no two are the same.
If you can quote back the fact, yes, you heard it, but you did not understand did you? It is possible that what you heard will not have been exactly said in that manner. Many chances can make you question yourself. Like, ‘no two are the same’ may be taken anyway, as you did not hear what was exactly told before or after it. Therefore, if you had listened there would not have been such a problem.
Why don’t people listen? The reason why people do not listen is that it is difficult. Really listening to someone takes effort and real investment; of time, focus, and empathy.
The thing is you cannot really find out anything without listening. Listening to others might teach you a thousand ways, you just need to know who to listen to. An average student in college spends 14 hours in a class per week, listening or hearing. To what is being taught.
If you are just hearing you might be in trouble. Part of the learning process requires you to listen to what the teacher says.
There will be times in your life when after a conversation; you realize that you have not heard a single word of what the person said. An average human speaks 180-200 words per minute. That might sound like many words. However, did you know a human brain could process 600-1000 words per minute?
So, use that part of the brain, because when you leave it unused it creates distractions. Try to give your undivided attention to the person you want to listen to. Ignore your surroundings; do not bother to look outside the window, or at the other things that are present in the room. Also, try not to think about other problems, while listening to something.
Keep an eye contact, as it will hold part of your attention. Use your body language to show that you are mentally present, and the speaker has your full attention.
Use gestures like nodding your head. Many communication experts say that, nonverbal communication is 3 times stronger, than verbal communication. To do this, keep your mind focused, do not let your mind wander. If you feel you are losing interest in the conversation, change you’re sitting/ standing position.
Be patient and let the speaker finish, before you start to speak. You never know what the person is about to say, so do not assume.
Many times when you interrupt, it gives out the wrong message. For instance, when you are saying something important, and someone interferes. You will take it, as the next person was not listening, though they might be. So, listen carefully and do not judge or conclude, with the half-heard story.
Do not start preparing of what to say, keep listening. If you get busy thinking what to say, you will miss what the person is saying.
If you are listening to something, try not to take things personally, when they are not intended that way. No, listening does not mean you have to agree to everything the person says, but do not react at the same moment. Respond to such things by making it clear that you understand their point, and that you think differently.
Yes, listening is the most important thing, but also try to focus on the way things are, presented. For example, concentrate a little on the tone of the speaker, the way he/she is standing, what gestures are given out.
This will help you understand the mind of the speaker, and have a better view on what’s he/she trying to say. It is easy to determine if a person is angry, as they tend to raise their voice when speaking. If someone is looking down when speaking, they are probably embarrassed. These are the little things you notice; those help you understand the speaker.
Usually conversations have a main idea, listen for the main idea. The main idea is the main points of the conversation that are, sent across by the speaker. Understand the key points as, they will help you understand the entire conversation.
Always remember to ask questions if you do not understand what the speaker is trying to say. If you think, you are on the wrong page, repeat what the speaker has said to ensure, that you understand the situation.
Feedback is one of the most important parts of the conversation. Your feedback ensures that you are listening to what the speaker is saying. Keep your expressions in control; try to present an expression that suits the conversation.