Years ago when I attended Sonoma State University, I took a class called When Children Are Seen and Heard. It was a profound class for me. It shifted the way I listened to others. From that point on, I made a commitment to myself to consciously listen when someone is speaking. Only then could I truly be present with them and hear what they are saying.
We want to make authentic connections with others, but we often get lost in our own thoughts, emotions and expectations, not really listening to them. In our crazy, busy lives, who around us deeply sees and hears us? Unfortunately, not many! One communication skill I’ve found valuable is Active Listening. It’s a practice of getting your own thoughts and emotions out of the way and really listening to the other person.
How to Do Active Listening
1. When the other person is speaking, listen to them with your full attention
2.Use your body language and eyes to show the person you are fully present for them
3. Listen to their words and sense the feelings they are conveying
4. Next, reflect back to the person exactly what you heard them say, so they feel truly seen and heard.
5. Switch roles and have them actively listen to you.
This practice of deeply listening and allowing the other to feel heard and seen is profound and an integral part of healthy communication. There is a potential for both communicators to be transformed. As the listener, you reap the benefits of true listening. As a receiver, this might be the first time someone is truly listening to what you’re actually saying. Today, try listening to someone and allowing them to feel heard. You may change their day, or possibly their life – and yours too!
Patricia London invites you to learn how to become a better communicator. Call for a one-hour Free Consultation with Patricia, a trained Life Coach, who can sensitively and skillfully guide you in your self-discovery process. 707.477.8231 or firstname.lastname@example.org