True Listening is a Gift to the Listener
Families all too often nod their way through routine conversations.† Brush off your listening skills and remember what life is all about; interaction with others! Modern technology can make it a habit to neglect our communication skills, don't let it.† You will miss too much.
Generations ago, people could focus on the task at hand. The world was slower paced, expectations were different and technology was significantly less. Now, if we arenít multi-tasking, we feel we are getting further behind.
Although multi-tasking is an honored and treasured talent, there may be times when we need to step back and focus. For the most part, if you are doing more than one thing, you probably arenít doing any of them well. Can you truly talk on the phone and drive safely? Can you read your email while carrying on a conversation? How about when you are cooking dinner, talking to your kids and texting? We are an information society. We can reach out in so many ways and at anytime. But, should we?
Best Advice:† TAKE A BREAK!† Stay focused on the conversation.
Have our listening skills taken a back seat to modern technology?
It does seem we can multi-task in many venues with very little disruption. However, when it comes to conversations, think about taking a mini vacation. Donít spread your focus. Keep the conversation a priority. Go back to the basics and utilize your listening skills.†
When you are talking to someone, enjoy the time. Intensely listen to what they are saying and wrap your mind around the moment. Life is made up of moments and the majority of them come from conversations.
Relationships come from interactions and the quality of them. Think about every relationship you haveÖ family, friends, coworkers, situational acquaintances, etc. The strength of the foundation is built on conversation. When you are focused on the actual communication, you have made the other person feel important.†We all know that sometimes what others want to discuss is not necessarily our top priority and at times our tolerance for these conversations vary depending on many factors. Therefore, perfection is not required. But, when you can, dust off your communication skills, and be tolerant of different communication styles.† When you make the other person a precedent for that specific moment in time, you have given yourself a gift.
When we treat ourselves to the enjoyment others bring, you open your heart to new opportunities. Those opportunities arise from truly listening and being a part of the moment. Life can be very stressful for so many of us. When given the chance to ease some of that pressure just by enjoying the company and conversation of others, we are actually allowing our hearts and minds to take that mini vacation most of us so desperately need!
The next time when someone starts to talk and you continue on with the task at hand, think about if those few minutes are so valuable that you canít just stop what you are doing and enjoy the importance of quality time with others. You may find that there are times the deadline for the project you are diligently focused on must be first completed. If that is the case, simply state the facts. If not, smile, give eye contact and enjoy.
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