4 Easy Ways To Improve Your Listening Skills

listening skills

How often do you work on your listening skills? Many people think they are listening to the speaker but in actuality, they’re not. If you really want to make the listening experience effective, there are some actions you can take.

4 Ways To Improve Your Listening Skills

attentive listeningBe attentive – When listening to a speaker, whether it’s a speaker speaking to a conference room of people or someone you’re having a conversation with on social media, it’s important to be attentive. Attentive listening means to be present and not to drift off or day dream. It also means to tune out distractions like background noise.

If the speaker has an accent, don’t let it take your attention away from WHAT’s being said because you’re focused on HOW it’s being said. Make sure that your own personal feelings and biases are not in the equation – at all.

Keep An Open Mind – You have to be able to listen to someone without judging them or secretly criticizing what’s being said. If what was said angers you or causes you some kind of emotion, it’s perfectly fine to feel that emotion. But once you form your mouth to say something negative about what was said, you have compromised your ability to be an effective listener.

Avoid jumping to conclusions. Allow the speaker to finish what he is saying before you contribute to the conversation because if you don’t have all the facts, you really can’t make any judgements about what’s being said.

When speaking to someone one-on-one, avoid being a sentence grabber. A sentence grabber is someone who’s mental pace is moving so quickly that he tries to hurry the speaker’s rate of speaking by interrupting and finishing his sentences.

More Ways to Improve Your Listening Skills

ask questionsAsk Questions After The Speaker Pauses – The speaker will be happy to answer any questions you have or further clarify what he said. Wait until after he pauses before asking your question. After listening completely, you may get your clarification. Otherwise, then would be an appropriate time to ask.

In some cases, the speaker may suggest that you listen first and hold questions for the end. If this is the case, jot down your questions so you don’t forget and ask at the specified time.  

If you’re having a one-on-one conversation with someone, listen and take notes as they are speaking. In this way, you can always refer to your notes and further clarify what was said or to use at a later date when revisiting the conversation.

Put Yourself In The Speaker’s Shoes – Let the speaker know that you understand what he or she is saying and that you can feel the same emotions he or she felt.
When the speaker tells a story, listen and identify with what he’s saying and trying to convey.

keep an open mindUse facial expressions and even nod at times to let the speaker know you get where he’s coming from. Comment on it if there’s an opportunity to do so and express how the story made you think of something that may have happened to you.

During a one-on-one conversation, tell someone, ” I know you were relieved” or “I can understand how hard that must have been for you”; or “you must have felt like you had the burden of the world on your shoulders.” In each of these cases, you’ve let the speaker know that, once again, you get it.

Listening Skills Can Be Mastered

In order to get a better understanding as to what a speaker is saying, practice the four listening skills for mastery. Effective listening skills ensures that you have a more rewarding experience as you listen more intently and gain new information.

“Being a good listener is more than just being quiet. It’s reflecting back on what you’re hearing. It’s processing the information to formulate a question, a comment or a speech.” -Shelley Moore Capito

I hope you enjoyed reading this and found value. If so, kindly leave a comment below and share on Facebook. Thank You!


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Theresa Lovelace

Home-based business and network marketing professional, blogger, teacher and marketing consultant. I have a passion for teaching network marketers how to brand themselves by developing their credibility in the marketplace and using simple online strategies to generate leads, earn income and recruit leaders into their business. My goal is to help create individuals who are financially independent…at last.
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  1. Zach Loescher
    Zach Loescher
    November 4, 2016 at 12:37 pm

    Great post! I really like the “Keep an open mind” I think so many people come in with a opinion already and they are very closed minded to any new ideas. If more people would listen to facts instead of others opinions, we all would have a better time listening and communicating. Great share!!

    • Theresa Lovelace
      Theresa Lovelace
      November 4, 2016 at 12:50 pm

      I totally agree, Zach. Thanks for commenting. Glad you got some value! 🙂

  2. Demetri Benton
    Demetri Benton
    November 4, 2016 at 6:46 pm

    Awesome post Theresa! Be attentive. It’s really easy to get distracted if you’re not in a quiet place. If you’re driving, multi-tasking or checking e-mails you’re not giving the speaker your full attention. Good listening skills are so important. Thanks for sharing!

  3. Dr. Lisa Thompson
    Dr. Lisa Thompson
    November 5, 2016 at 7:14 am

    Great skills on listening Theresa….

    Loved the seeing things from the speaker’s perspective. It reminds me of the quote by Atticus Finch in “To Kill a Mockingbird” – You never really understand a person until you consider things from his point of view … until you climb into his skin and walk around in it.

    Dr. Lisa

    • Theresa Lovelace
      Theresa Lovelace
      November 5, 2016 at 12:09 pm

      Thanks Lisa…You are so right and you brought up To Kill A Mockingbird, one of my most favorite books ever. 🙂

  4. Chris Shouse
    Chris Shouse
    November 5, 2016 at 8:52 pm

    Listening skills are very important. You can not know how to help someone if you do know what they need. You know that saying you have 2 ears for a reason and only one mouth.

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