The Three Fastest Ways To Becoming A Better Listener
If you want to be heard, learn to listen and create deeper and more meaningful relationships.
By JEANNIE SHAW
If You Want To Be Heard, Learn To Listen
The Three Fastest Ways To Becoming A Better Listener. Listening is truly an art. I asked myself… who have I felt safe with and who feels safe with me?
What are they sharing? Are they letting their guard down and being completely open and vulnerable or are they constantly changing words and thoughts so as not to conjure up judgment out of me.
The thing about listening is that the better you are at listening, the more space you’ll create to be heard… so if you want to be heard, learn to listen. And create deeper and more meaningful relationships.
“Who have I felt safe with and who feels safe with me? “
We All Just Want To Feel Safe
Oftentimes it takes a lot of courage to share your inner most thoughts and feelings. And, in the cases of needing solutions or feedback, generally, people don’t mind advice but ONLY IF they ask for it. What they really want is to be heard.
To feel heard and understood – to feel safe. So when we share something deeply intimate that leaves us feeling vulnerable, the last thing we want to feel is attacked. Or unheard. The value of someone who truly listens is priceless.
Imagine sharing something that makes you feel stripped. And instead of feeling compassion, you feel more broken for having opened up.
The more authentic we choose to be, the more vulnerable we are and I ask myself: what makes a safe place for people to talk and be open?
“So when we share something deeply intimate that leaves us feeling vulnerable, the last thing we want to feel is attacked. “
A Place To Sound Off
Here’s the thing about most people and their life situations. They already know deep down what their true situation is, even if they don’t give it voice – they know. They just want a place to sound off – to hear it echo back to their own ears. Having a space to fall apart and process the information is one of the best ways to hear ourselves and truly acknowledge our own truths.
That being said, whether your “peoples” need a place to share, unravel, cry, seek advice or whatever the case may be… here are 3 fastest ways to becoming a better listener.
1. Just Listen
We are often quick to interject with our experiences and this time when and that time how. First, LISTEN. Acknowledge that you’re hearing and just listen.
2. Reserve Judgment
If you are fair and honest and take true inventory of your own life, you will find that there were many many times you fell short of what you “should do”. Maybe you don’t even have to look back too far. There may be many areas in your life where you still lack direction and perfection. Stay grounded. As your thoughts float in and out, let them. They will surface and disappear.
3. Ask Questions
Years ago, I realized that a friend of mine would listen then ask questions. It helped me to process what I was feeling. I’ve found that answering her questions help me to clarify. She would ask questions like…
Why do you think that happens?
What makes you think that?
How did you feel when…?
What do you think could make this better?
Before I knew it, I was calmer, felt more in touch with how I feel and what my truth was… And that’s all that really matters.
It helped me so much. It’s as if I went to Listening University and took Listening101 – my first introduction to learning how to listen.
When I look back on times I vented, I really just wanted to feel heard… even when it seemed like I was seeking counsel. I always knew the answers deep down. Don’t we all? We just want to feel like we stepped into a safe room and unveiled the real us, freely.
All those times I spent seeking opinions and ideas that didn’t matter. I was valuing the outside more than my own inner voice. I just wanted to hear me.
Follow Your Own Intuition
As with all things, there’s a balance… there are times we do need advice from people in the know or who have done things you’re trying to do etc. But for those everyday “deep down I know the answer” things, just meditate or find someone you can speak to safely.
I learned how to be a better listener from people who listened to me. Who is a good listener in your life?