Listening Have you ever been in the middle of a conversation when the person you are talking to just gets up and walks away? Or fiddles in the chair? Or looks everywhere but at you? How does this make you feel? Most people feel hurt. The listener acts as though he or she has absolutely no interest in what the speaker has to say. And yet, when it is their turn to talk, they expect, if not demand, attention.
Are you a good listener or a bad listener? Lets take a look and see which one you think you are.
The good listener Looks at the person speaking What would you like for tea tonight my dear?
Answers in the correct way to show that they have listened Please could I have a lovely salad
Does not interrupt the person speaking I was just flying down Lever Edge Lane when suddenly… Ill wait until he is finished before I say anything
Does not rush the speaker Im not sure how to say this Its ok just take your time
Asks appropriate questions The world is made up of lots of different countries How many countries are there sir?
1. Give your full attention on the person who is speaking. 2. Make sure your mind is focused. If you feel your mind wandering, change the position of your body and try to concentrate on the speakers words. 3. Let the speaker finish before you begin to talk. 4. Let yourself finish listening before you begin to speak. 5. Listen for main ideas. The main ideas are the most important points the speaker wants to get across. 6. Ask questions. If you are not sure what the speaker has said, just ask. 7. Give feedback. Sit up straight and look directly at the speaker. Now and then, nod to show that you understand. At appropriate points you may also smile, frown, laugh, or be silent. These are all ways to let the speaker know that you are really listening. Remember, you listen with your face as well as your ears!
Thinking fast Remember, time is on your side! Thoughts move about four times as fast as speech. With Practice, while you are listening you will also be able to think about what you are hearing, really understand it, and give feedback to the speaker.