As with other types of listening it is important to hear the facts and details of what is being said. However, with relationship listening the greater emphasis is on understanding the speaker. Here are some ways to help you deepen your ability to understand the person you are listening to;
1. Pay Attention– your body language and physical cues can help the speaker to feel welcome to share more. Posture, eye contact and facial expressions can send the message that you really care and truly want to understand the person you are listening to. Check out this wikihelp page for some tips about how to employ body language and facial expressions that will help you listen.
2. Be Supportive– avoid interrupting, giving advice, or rushing the conversation. Give the person time to say what needs to be said and believe the person.
3. Be Empathetic– empathy requires you to think and feel with someone. Being an empathetic listener means accepting the person who speaking, and allowing yourself to enter into the other persons world. Being empathetic means becoming more involved in the persons story and can have a strong impact on you as the listener who is now feeling the pain, loss and grief that is being shared in a more personal way.
Here is one of many Ted Talks about listening… is this one helpful to you? Please let us know if you find other videos that help explain good tips and strategies for listening.