Saturday, March 10, 2012

The Power of Listening

active-listeningMany of us underestimate the power of listening. We talk more than we listen!

Why? We all want to be heard and understood. Right? To do so, we need to have the knowledge and knowledge comes only when we become good listeners. Agree?

A person speaking needs to feel that he or she is heard and understood. They need to have a response when one is asked for. As humans the very nature of being understood and heard is connected to our sense of self worth. When you are speaking, you have something of value to say and you want to say it to contribute and to be heard. If you are not listened to or even ignored, it hurts and often affects your self esteem.

“The most basic of all human needs is the need to understand and be understood. The best way to understand people is to listen to them.”

Some people use conversations to bring about clarity on what they are thinking or feeling. They talk to people to work through thoughts and to refine them. Being a Good Listener helps build trust and foster relationships on both levels- professional and personal.

The Irony here is we place very less value on this skill and take for granted it’s potential. Yet we call ourselves good listeners. How many people do you often come across who seldom listen while you talk to them? I’m sure we can agree that this is a skill we need to develop upon as a part of our personal development …but how many of us spend time and efforts developing this skill?

Listening is a skill I believe that we all should master. Starting today onwards, when you meet someone, commit to yourself to be a Great Listener. Allow me to help you get started on the art of Listening.

Listen for specific words, tone, volume and how words are phrased. This will provide direction to further questioning and seeking more deeply for substance and quality information. It is equally important to observe body language for clues on the feelings and motivation of the message sender.

Practice the art of clarifying and summarizing to get maximum benefit from the questioning process. Use the 80/20 principle- 80% listening and 20% talking. Learn to always listen with your eyes, feelings and intuition. If you feel you are quite good at listening, practice will make you even better.

A good listener is someone who is able to focus on what another person is saying without getting distracted. A great listener has a great deal of focus and is able to be present in the moment of the conversation. This may sound easy to achieve but in practice it is very difficult and at times may require putting our own needs aside to listen to another person. Now that is the art of being a powerful listener.

It is better to say that you are not able to listen to someone when you can’t rather than to fake it. This type of deception is sensed immediately and may create a false image of the person and creating a trusting relationship may be difficult.
Asking effective questions and improving your listening skills must be an undergoing frequent development to become a creative thinker.

Until Next Time

Happy Listening
Vishal D


Vidya Sury said... [Reply]

This is a timeless post! :-) The power of listening impacts the quality of our lives in a significant way!

Vishal Dharamdas said... [Reply]

Thanks Vidya, Appreciate it :-)

Anonymous said... [Reply]

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inspirational video's said... [Reply]

if we really wants to improve our self and wants to learn about our failure we should listen to our critics and need to listen what other people saying about us .

How To Be Confident said... [Reply]

I love the 80/20 rule. Reminds me of my dieting rule if I eat right 80 percent of the time then it's ok if I'm not perfect the other 20 percent. For someone in sales like myself often I see that sales reps will talk way more than they are listening. The 80/20 rule is a great rule to implement anytime but especially in sales! Good info here.

caretakerray said... [Reply]

So many people are too busy talking to listen. It's too bad they can;t hear what others have to teach!

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