Are you a good listener?
If you said, yes, would those you work with say the same?
Regardless of their line of work or occupation, people want you to value what they have to say.
Michelle Roya Rad wrote an article entitled, 5 Skills of a Good Listener. In this post, she writes that a good listener has five characteristics that:
- Provides the one speaking with their attention.
- Are non-judgemental.
- Try to understand the speaker.
- Work to be silent.
- Tries to declare their understanding.
Here are four more skills of someone who listens well to consider.
A Good Listener Does Not Interrupt
No one like to be interrupted.
Rod Serling (December 25, 1924 – June 28, 1975) was known for his television work during the 1950s and the creation of The Twilight Zone.
On the subject of interruptions, Serling once said, “It is difficult to produce a television documentary that is both incisive and probing when every twelve minutes one is interrupted by twelve dancing rabbits singing about toilet paper.”
Interruptions can be tough.
A Good Listener Faces the One Who Is Talking and Works on Good Eye Contact
Can there be too much eye contact? Yes! Some people try to dominant people and situations with an intense connection. However, here are a few ideas to think about “too little eye contact” and “healthy eye contact” found in “Fascinating Facts About Eye Contact, by
Too Little Eye Contact can:
- make you appear uneasy
This type of behavior does not seem to care for the one talking.
However, Healthy Eye Contact can produce positive results.
“Just the right” amount of eye contact – the amount that produces a feeling of mutual likability and trustworthiness – will vary with situations, settings, personality types, gender and cultural differences. As a general rule, though, direct eye contact ranging from 30% to 60% of the time during a conversation – more when you are listening, less when you are speaking – should make for a comfortable, productive atmosphere. (Fascinating Facts About Eye Contact, by
A Good Listener Is Relaxed
A good listener is someone who is relaxed and can block out distractions.
Noises such as background activity and visual distraction destroy the ability of a listener to relax. So, does your cell phone.
A good listener understands that to relax they cannot be distracted by their agendas or feelings.
To relax while you are listening you:
- Must be present with the person who is speaking.
- Have to apply and direct your attention to the person who is talking.
- Need to be willing to become a servant-leader.
Good listeners take a deep breath and push themselves into an atmosphere of relaxation.
A Good Listener Asks a Lot of Questions Rather Than Giving a Lot of Answers
Have you ever been around someone who knew all the answers to the questions?
That type of experience is insulting. It makes those involved, other than the know-it-all feel that they are somewhat stupid.
Jesus told many parables, furthermore, he also asked many questions.
Many scholars believe that there were over 150 different questions that Jesus asked in the four Gospels.
The ability to ask is a much more developed skill than the action of giving answers. This type of behavior is an art.