Do you want to have a stronger social impact on others? Then become a better listener and better able to understand other people’s perspective. There are 3 very effective ways to do this.

Listening skills play a crucial role in building quality relationships with others. It is through good listening that you are able to get a grasp on their inner and outer world. So when you speak, you are better equipped to have a strong impact on them and see good results.

Considering this, I’d like to show you the top 3 ways I know for becoming a better listener, based on my experience as a confidence and communication coach.

1. Widen the range of things you do.

Many times we have problems paying attention to what someone says because we have no experience in that area and so it doesn’t resonate with us. If someone talks about their travelling experiences and you barely did any travelling, there is little common ground so you might have a hard time paying attention.

The people with the worst listening skills are typically the ones who don’t have much of a life. Because they have not developed their interests so there are few conversation topics that appeal to them.

So, expand your horizons. Get some hobbies, try new things, and learn new things. As you do so your interests will expand and you’ll enjoy talking about a lot more topics. Because you resonate with them on a personal level.

2. Practice being present.

Being present means being attentive to the activity you’re doing at a certain point and to what’s going on around you to boot. It’s about living the experience rather than being in your head, thinking about something else.

And this is something you can practice. When you find yourself in your head, wrapped in your thoughts rather that paying attention to what’s going on, deliberately shift your attention towards the activity. You can do this in conversation situations as well, but not just in them.

As you practice, you’ll discover that you’ll get better during conversations at focusing on the other person’s words when they speak and listening to them. Because you are more used to being present.

3. Ask questions during conversation.

When you play an active role in a conversation, it makes you pay more attention to it. Well, you can force yourself to play an active role, for example by deciding to ask the other person question while they are talking to navigate the conversation and get specific details.

Once you decided to ask questions, this compels you to actually listen to what the other person says, because that needs to be clear for you in order to ask suitable questions. It’s a great little technique to get yourself not only listening more, but also more engaged in the discussion.

Try these methods and I’m sure you’ll see very good outcomes. They have been tested again and again in a variety of social situations and they work brilliantly well in improving how people interact with each other.

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Also, do not disregard the other side of conversation: talking to people openly yourself. Learn to be outgoing in conversation, be a good listener and a good speaker as well. That’s what makes a truly high-quality, charismatic conversationalist.