Are You REALLY Listening?Of all the component skills of communication(speaking, writing, reading, listening), for mostpeople, LISTENING is the hardest skill to learn. And yet….“To listen well is as powerful a means of communication andinfluence as to talk well.” - John Marshall (1755-1835) 4th Chief Justice of the United States Supreme Court
• Sometimes we may hear what someone is saying without really listening.• In your opinion, what’s the difference between hearing and listening?
• Successful communication requires ACTIVE LISTENING.• What’s the difference between passive listening and active listening?
How to be an ACTIVE Listener:• 1. Be attentive. FOCUS on the speaker.• 2. Use nonverbal actions to show you are listening. – relaxed posture – head-nodding – facial expression – relaxed body expression – eye contact• 3. Listen with an accepting attitude.
• 4.Ask some questions to demonstrate that you are sincerely interested.• 5. Use reflections and restatements frequently to try to communicate to the person what you think they are saying and test for understanding. Practice “mirroring.”
• 6. Use encouraging words to show you are listening and to invite speaker to continue. – "I see." – "Right." – "Uh, huh.” – "Tell me more." – "Sounds like you have some ideas on this." – "Im interested in what you have to say." – "Lets talk about it."
THINGS TO AVOID While Being an Active Listener1. DO NOT INTERRUPT!!!2. Do not interrogate. Limit the number of questions you ask so that you are not "drilling" them.
3. Do not try to think of your response in your own head while you are listening.4. Do not change the subject.
5. Do not be judgmental. Avoid phrases like: – "Are you sure?" – "You shouldnt feel that way." – "It’s not that bad." – Youre making something out of nothing.” – "Thats a dumb question.”
• According to Sean Covey, author of The7 Habits of Highly Effective Teens, there are five different poor listening styles. Are you guilty of any of these?1. Spacing out2. Pretend listening3. Selective listening4. Word listening5. Self-centered listening• Judging• advising• probing
• 1. Spacing out occurs when we are so tuned out to what someone is saying it’s like we’re in another world.
• 2. Pretend listening happens when someone is not really listening but acts like they are because they make comments once in awhile as the speaker is talking by saying things like “yeah,” “uh-huh,” “awesome.”
• 3. Selective listening means that the listener is only paying attention to the parts of the conversation that interest him.
• 4. Word listening means that you pay attention only to the words that someone is saying, and not to their body language.
• 5. Self-centered listening happens when we hear everything from our own point of view, not the point of view of the speaker.• There are three types of self-centered listening:
• judging – sometimes we make judgments about the speaker instead of listening
• advising – sometimes we give advice instead of just listening
• probing – this happens when we question and try to dig up emotions before the speaker is ready to share them• Do your parents ever do this to you?
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