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3 Ways to Save Your Social Life by Listening

We all like to talk about ourselves, but we rarely actually listen to others. Most of us probably believe we’re expert communicators, but you can’t be an expert communicator if you’re a poor listener or simply don’t care about the opinions of others.

I usually keep to myself, but I start rambling once I’m in a social setting. I don’t know whether it’s nervousness or excitement (probably both), but I just start talking without realizing that I took over the conversation until after-the-fact.

The thing about talkers is that they want everyone is listen to them and provide insight, but no one wants to be around someone who only talks about themselves. So for the sake of your social life, let’s talk about the three ways you can communicate better.

1. Ask Good Questions

Asking questions is often viewed as a sign of respect because it means you’re paying attention; however, asking the wrong questions can make it seem like you’re just pretending to care or listen.

For example, asking a question that the conversation already addressed isn’t a good idea. Asking shallow questions that only require a short response may also indicate that you’re just asking a question to get back to you.

You know that saying that “there is no such thing as a stupid question?” Yeah… I think we all know that there are stupid questions.

Be sure to ask in-depth questions and allow others to finish their thoughts. Then, elaborate on what they said and show them that you’re paying attention and thinking about what they’re sharing with you.

2. Learn to Listen

Believe it not, listening is a skill, and it’s a skill not many people have. That’s why people say there’s a difference between hearing and listening.

When you hear someone, you basically just acknowledge that they said something. Listening, on the other hand, is hearing what someone says and registering it to understand them better.

Most people think that listening is when you respond to what someone says, but that’s not truly listening- that’s just an auto-response. Listeners should take a moment to process what others are saying, replay it in their head, and then dig deeper into what’s being said.

3. It Takes Two to Tango

Conversing with someone should be balanced, unless it’s a venting session. One person should speak, then the other person should speak, then back to the original person, and so on.

Remember that silences are nothing to be afraid of. You don’t need to fill the silences with conversation. Enjoy your food, the scenery, or your wine. I find that taking a breath and then resuming a conversation reenergizes everyone and calms the nerves.

It’s time to tune down that narcissism and suck up to your friends by letting them shine in the limelight once in a while. Again, this is for the sake of your social life.

 

Asian girl emoji holding her hand outReferences:

Active Listening

How Can I Improve My Listening Skills?

This Is How You Stop Yourself From Being a Conversation Hog

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About the Author:

Sophia Tinsley is XTech Staffing’s Marketing Specialist and writes career-advice related articles and content for the website. She also manages XTech’s social media platforms.Sophia recently graduated from Texas State University where she earned her BBA with a major in Marketing. She is the crazy cat lady of the office and the embodiment of Michael Scott – she always has wacky ideas.Sophia also writes for her personal fashion blog and creates movie trailers as hobbies. She thinks she’s unique, but likes all things “basic” (i.e. Starbucks). And if you’re a Game of Thrones fan, then you and Sophia will get along swimmingly.
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