Are You a Bad Listener?
By Monica Y Mateo
I called my best friend on the phone today–I felt like I needed someone to TRULY listen to me. It turns out she has needed the very same thing. We both have felt like people are talking AT us rather than TO us. Conversations with people have been so one-sided. To be as frank as possible, I have been feeling like a used up condom when it comes to having conversations because people don’t actively listen anymore. So what does any good blogger do when people don’t listen– they WRITE about it.
So I’ve created a fun little list on what makes people crappy listeners (enjoy):
1. Not making eye contact. Unless you’re keeping an eye on your baby or toddler– you should be making eye contact with the person. Looking away or down at your phone are poor habits that many have developed. It is important to make the person feel valued and making eye contact is critical in effective listening. It demonstrates interest and focus rather than looking as though you are bored.
2. Cutting the person off. Allow the person to finish their point before interjecting with your point, which leads me to my other point.
3. Interrupting and making it about you. If you’re going to interject at least make it about what the person is talking about. Do not go back to your own experience/drama. It’s not all about you. Allow the person to finish their story and offer feedback based on THEIR ISSUE.
4. Giving a lecture. No one enjoys a long lecture, small amounts of advice are fine, but don’t lecture people on what they should do or not do.
5. Only talking about yourself.
People have become quite self-absorbed and its a very, “me me me” world. There have been times when a person has completely vented to me and hung up right after. I was never asked how I was doing or if I had anything I needed to talk about. They felt good about getting it off their chest and they needed nothing more from me.
6. Letting the conversation go dead. So the person is talking to you and you say one short response back to them. Silence creates an uncomfortable feeling and you both walk away. Unless you hate this person, it’s rude. Engage and try your best.
Listen with open ears and offer a real conversation. It’s important to create a bond with others and the first step is just paying attention.
Love, peace, and healing, xo!
Ps. Catch me!
About the author:
Monica Y. Mateo is a licensed social worker by day and writer/blogger by night. She is currently working on a memoir to be published and a special project for vegans and meat eaters alike. She is a 7 year survivor of Anaplastic Large Cell Lymphoma ALK+, which taught her that people can change unhealthy patterns and behaviors. She enjoys yoga and practices Buddhism, which has taken her on an adventure of a lifetime. She has a wonderful fiance and son who have inspired her to achieve her goals.
Disclaimer: MONICAYMATEO.COM is not providing medical advice and this information is not in place of medical advice.