Sometimes you think that being a good listener just means hearing the words that come out of a person’s mouth. In reality, this is not the case at all. Listening is not easy.
Here is an example. Imagine two friends talking. One of them tells the other that she had an argument with her mother the night before. The first friend is worried, but as soon as she finishes talking, the other tells her about a similar situation she went through.
Was the second friend really a good listener? No, because he used the care of the former to tell his own experience, moving from the position of the listener to that of the person asking to be heard. The truth is, he didn’t know how to listen to his girlfriend at all.
Mistakes to avoid to be a good listener
Maybe all this information doesn’t seem valid to you. Maybe you’re saying to yourself, “But I’m really a good listener!” That is why we thought of reviewing the most common mistakes we make when we “listen” to others.
The first mistake we must avoid in order to be a good listener is found in the example given above. Someone tells us something that is on his mind, and we take the opportunity to talk about ourselves.
In the second case, which is even worse, the second girlfriend would quickly change the subject. For example, if your girlfriend told you that she had an argument with her mother, your reply would be, “I’m sorry. And how was work today? ”
In the third case, the person who “listens” diminishes the importance of the problem that worries the other. So he says things like, “Don’t worry,” “It’s stupid,” or “Let it go.”
The fourth mistake is to tell the person what to do, offering advice and solutions that he may not even have to put into practice now.
As you can see, in none of the four situations was the person in front of us listened to. In reality, we used the story she told to talk about ourselves.
The tendency to ignore the worries of those around you
The situations presented above make you think that you are a selfish person who, although he thought he knew how to listen to others, in reality wanted to talk about himself.
The truth is that being a good listener is a process that requires a lot of attention. It is essential to pay attention to the worries expressed by the person in front of you and not to interrupt him to tell your own problems.
Even when you tell that man how to proceed, you draw attention to your personal way of looking at things.
It is true that you can express your point of view. However, you do not have to tell another person how to act or what to say, because you are not in her situation. If you do that, you’re just trying to assert yourself through that person.
When you don’t know how to really listen to the man in front of you, you look for a way to stand out, and your behavior takes on a selfish note.
Even if it doesn’t sound good, when we don’t know how to listen, we ignore the problems and worries of those around us.
How to be a good listener
You have already learned the mistakes you make when you think you are listening to those around you. Now it is important to learn to be a good listener.
Take into account the recommendations below:
- Don’t offer solutions. As I have already mentioned, it is not good to offer solutions to the other person’s problems or to tell him how to act. Instead, ask her questions to invite her to reflect on her problems and make a decision. This is a good way to listen.
- Deepen the subject of the discussion. If you really listen to what is being said, ask questions that prove your interest. “What do you think about this?” or “What are you going to do?” these are just a few examples.
- Avoid talking about yourself. Focus only on the other person. Don’t talk about yourself unless she asks you to tell her about a similar experience in your life.
- Do not underestimate the situation discussed. Even if it seems insignificant to you, think that it is very important for that person. Therefore, try not to trivialize the subject of the discussion.
We hope that now you know what it means to be a good listener for the man in front of you, without thinking about yourself, but only about what he tells you.
You have to give up the idea that listening is a passive action, because it is very active. That is why it is necessary to learn to be a good listener.