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This article was translated from our Spanish edition using AI technologies. Errors can occur because of this process.
The opinions of entrepreneurs' contributors are their own.
The real power of communication is listening, not speaking. In fact, I always share the idea that we listen 80% of the time and only talk 20%.
It is not just about the economy of words, but that the process of connecting with other people through the use of language, accompanied by gestures and emotions, is conceptually based on the ability to interpret and accompany what others share with us.
We have been trained in the art of speaking since we were born. Is it because of the early stimulation for us to talk about babies that we have been branded as talking and talking and listening a lot less?
This is how you train your listening
You probably know the public speaking courses; In fact, I have published many books and online and face-to-face training courses on the subject.
The suggestion for now is to develop listening skills, which is exactly the opposite although it is complementary. It's not just about staying absent in silence, it's about having the strength to be present with the other and express yourself.
In order for your contact bridges with others to stand firmly on a solid foundation and to really connect, it is necessary that you develop active listening.
It's about the ability to connect with total presence: physically, mentally, affectively and spiritually, so that you can make real contact with us and others in this way.
When you do it this way, you have the benefit of silencing, over time, the mental noise, the thoughts circulating at full speed, and the judgments and interpretations as others speak.
These three ideas will help you speak less and listen more:
Keep eye contact. Do not interrupt or disturb what they are telling you. To get in touch with people, calm your mind and stop preparing counter arguments while they are talking to you.
5 Reasons Why Listening Works & Practical Techniques
In today's working world, listening is paramount in the field of soft skills, as is the knowledge to express your ideas clearly, teamwork, flexibility and adaptability, among other things.
To accomplish this, here are 5 compelling reasons and several exercises to teach you how to listen:
1. You will become more aware of the ideas and intentions of others
If we just talk, the hemispheres of the brain get used to doing that for the most part. When you make it a habit, it seems to you that silent and very close observation is a waste of time.
Well it's the opposite. You can get a better grasp of other people's intentions and from there build a better exchange of ideas.
Practical exercise: From now on, stop answering automatically in every conversation you have. Pause briefly for 5 seconds and then answer. See how you feel by starting with “micro-breastfeeding” to get used to a new way of hearing.
2. What we say is prescribed
Perhaps you are not fully aware of the importance of the law of language. Let's take this example: A handwritten contract is not the same as one without a signature. The same thing happens with the spoken word: it is a decree, you manifest it, it comes from your voice and it is expressed. You take responsibility for what you say.
Every word has a weight and they are loaded with meaning. However, there are many people who find that by talking more they fill the rooms and thus have an obvious advantage, for example by drawing attention to their verbosity or finding it more important, eloquent or decisive.
There are people who say, "I even talk to the stones," and that's fine … except when they don't give others space to express themselves, let alone listen empathically.
To practice this point, remember, if what you're about to say isn't valuable, don't say it. If you don't add a relevant aspect, keep it to yourself. Do not fill in any spaces. In any case, if there are ideas that don't work out, write them down and keep them to yourself. Practice this for a month in a row and you will see your conversations gain quality and depth.
3. You can communicate without words
Verbal language is ideal for moving the people in front of us (walking in time). In fact, it accounts for more than 90% of all human communication; Words are the rest.
To listen actively, you can work on noticing your gestures and paraverbals, such as posture, speed of speaking, and the distance you are from others.
If you manage to master your listening skills, you will see how richer and deeper the conversations are because you pay more attention to what the other person is saying, their micro-gestures, their cadences, nuances and silence.
Practice this way: when you are with someone, observe the position of your body, if you feel any relaxation or tension anywhere, such as your hands and legs, the position of your head and adjust whatever you need to to be in tune moment. He also pays attention to the corporeal in other people as they convey messages to us, especially emotional ones. Then focus your attention on the message it is conveying without your thoughts going elsewhere. Keep your presence complete and still.
4. Ask to move forward, not curious
A very human quality is to want to know what others think and what life is like, or to gossip. If what you're asking helps improve the process you're in, move on. And if it's just limited to your own curiosity or doesn't work out, consider letting it go.
Listening is a dance between two or more people in which your perception and intuition are highly developed and placed at the service of the action you are doing with others.
To work on this aspect, when contributions are made it would be appropriate that they are constructive and support the development of the bond. Ask powerful, deep questions; go into the details that are important to you.
5. Paraphrasing: the best way to check that you are listening confidently
Another key point in the quality of listening is the paraphrase technique, which repeats in your own words the most important aspects of what you need to check with the other person.
What is it for? To avoid judgments, assumptions and possibly misinterpretations that result from assuming certain things when you could instead have asked whether what you have just paraphrased is what the other was trying to express.
I encourage you to practice it in every conversation. As you get to relevant and key points in the dialogue, say something like, “If you will allow me, I want to make sure that I fully understand what I have heard. What I have heard (or perceived or observed) is… ”and you are repeating the message in your own way. And at the end one asks: “Is that so?” And thus opens up the possibility of correction or assertion from the other side.
“You learn to be silent, to listen; Hearing is how you learn to speak; and then you learn to be silent by speaking, ”said the Greek philosopher Diogenes von Sinope. And the great Chaplin said, "Don't wait for your turn: really listen and you will be different."
As you have seen, the practice of listening does not fill a conversation with the absence of words. On the contrary: it serves to be actively present while others express themselves and wait for the next step that you take in the dance of good communication.