Do you listen well? How do you know? I heard someone say once that you have two ears and one mouth, use it in that ratio. How many of you honestly do? Its all part of being a great communicator. Do you try to project yourself through ‘active listening?’. What is that anyway? After introducing yourself to someone, do you become a listener or do you just take over the conversation and well, get them to listen? I know I have been guilty of that. Have you? Listeners tend to know that they learn a great deal while talkers learn nothing.
Do you draw the other person ‘out’ in your conversation with him/her? Do you ask for examples or ask to explain things in another way, a more simpler way? Do you give feedback and try to reiterate what you learned. Did you know that by doing so, by actually, genuinely giving your ears to someone and really listening, you give the best communication gift of all: paying value to others.
You see, this idea of communication boils down to one thing: attitude. An attitude of the mind. An attitude that can become a whole way of life, if you make it. Let me elaborate …
When you make the other person’s interest first, when you have someone else’s interest at heart, not just your own, the other person can sense it. You could call it a sixth sense. Everyone, whether you know it or not, have their own individual frequencies, and telegraph or communicate what’s really going on, on the inside, on the outside. Not even the best actor can hide it. So, when people know that you’re listening to them because your attitude is service-oriented, not self-oriented, people can read it loud and clear. The opposite is also true, as people can get an uneasy feeling when they talk with a person who has only his own interests in mind and not theirs. Ask yourself one question: who do you trust more – someone who listens to you or someone who forces their viewpoints and opinions on to you?
To improve listening to the words of others, try to frame your mind as theirs. We can call this re-framing. Try ‘seeing’ it from the other person’s viewpoint, the other person’s frame-of-view. Re-frame your mind in to the other person’s frame-of-mind. Some people call this empathy.
You could sum up by saying: say more, with less. But throw away the ‘old frame’ (opinions and belief system you have adopted even before you were old enough to think and question the basis of and ….)
…. begin with a new frame – a new belief system. You re-frame your mind … your thoughts … your attitude … to improve your communication skills and ultimately, communicate more effectively. To others. To you.
Re-frame. One thought at a time.
So re-frame your mind, my friends. Two Ears. One Mouth. Use them in that ratio.
Until next time …