Listening skills can be developed if you are willing to practice a bit. Why bother? Because being a good listener takes you half way to becoming a good communicator, and good communicators build the types of relationships that support weight loss efforts. Being a good listener means attending to the other person and putting your own thoughts on hold while you truly focus on what they are saying. It sounds simple, but it actually takes work to get this down just right. Here are some good tips on how to hone that focus:
- Look at the person when they are talking to you and no matter how badly you want to comment on something they are saying, simply let them talk until they are finished. Resist the temptation to interrupt or to let other things draw your focus.
- Ask the person questions about what they just said. This shows that you are attending and gives the other person a chance to explain anything you may have been unclear about.
- Summarize what the other person said. If you can sum up the overall idea of what the other person was talking about it will show that you have been paying attention.
These three things can really help you improve your listening skills. You will probably find that with just a little bit of practice you can easily focus on the conversation at hand and become quite skilled at listening to another person. It’s a great quality to have!