How to listen effectively


1. A good listener has to exercise mental discipline over himself. Only if you concentrate properly can you be a good listener.

2. If you are attending a meeting, talk or lecture see to it that you arrive early so that you can settle yourself physically and compose yourself mentally before the speeches start.

3. Do not allow yourself to be distracted by noises or other things like a pretty girl or handsome boy entering the room or the perfume of your neighbor. Do not distract the speaker yourself.

4. Find an area of interest and listen for ideas.

5. Avoid thinking too much about a point that has just been made by the speaker as this will prevent you from paying attention to the next. You can take notes and think about the matter later. Try to understand first, evaluate later.

6. Keep on open mind and be patient.

7. if you find that an informal talk or discussion has been going on for a very long time then do not hesitate to suggest a break so that the participants may refresh themselves and be able to concentrate better after the break.

8. Avoid listening to several people at the same time. If your telephone rings in the middle of an important conversation do not interrupt the conversation but request the telephoning party to ring you up later.

9. Show interest in the person who is talking to you by looking at him and by either nodding your head or by short encouraging A friendly and patient attitude helps you to get a real insight into the thoughts and feelings of the speaker. You could also restate the speaker’s feelings briefly.

10. Do not contradict openly with words like “ I think you are wrong� as this discourages the speaker or forces him to use false insincere arguments.

11. Listen to the feelings of the speaker and not only to his words.

12. Make sure that there are no emotional barriers on your own side which prevent you from listening attentively. Do not interrupt, unless it is absolutely necessary. Do not be in a hurry to talk.

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