Many people especially students, they think they are good listeners whereas in the real sense they are not listening to the information or message but they are also hearing it. Being a good listener is a skill that should be developed and even practiced. Being a good listener you need to pay total attention to the information and also remain the focus. Listening is very important because it enhances our learning processes. Listening is the best method of understanding any message and also improves direction which helps our proper reaction.
However, there are three (3) types of listeners. The three listeners are;
– COMBATIVE LISTENER
A combative listener tends to nurture his or her point instead of understanding some else’s view. This type of listener only looks for flaws or mistakes of the speaker in order to take the floor. This type of listener is not good at all. Though, it may be useful during debates or arguments.
– PASSIVE LISTENER
As the name sounds, such listener is just passive and attentive. He listens to the speaker attentively but fails to verify the validity of the source or information of the speaker. In another way round, this type of listener does not even contribute a single word to the discussion on ground. A passive listener is said to be neither combative nor active. This type of listener lacks creativity.
– ACTIVE LISTENER
Finally, the best type of listener is being an active listener. This involves paying total attention and also contribute to the discussion on ground. This type of listener is neither passive nor combative. The active listener verifies the validity of the speaker’s claim which makes it different to a passive listener who does not care to know how true in the speaker’s message.
Over the months, I have discovered some ways that seem to be effective to become a good and active listener. Sincerely, people around me have noticed a change in me as a result of the application of the following ways I adopted. The effective ways are as follow;
1- MAKE EYE CONTACT
It is pertinent to maintain eye contact with the speaker. It is an effective way to get the message the speaker is delivering. Though many people struggle with this making of eye contact, it seems to be somehow staring at the speaker. The fact is that, try to maintain it by making eye contact. Soon, it shall be a skill you will develop.
2- REFRAIN FROM DISTRACTIONS
Distraction is one of the obstacles that hinders the ability of an individual to get the message of the speaker. Make sure you stay far away from any form of distraction in order to capture the information.
A focus is also a vital element that strengthens your ability to become a great listener. Let your focus be on what you are listening to. Kindly focus on a key point of the message.
4- BODY LANGUAGE OR GESTURE
Another important part is the reading of gesture or the body language of the speaker. Reading the speaker’s gesture and body language makes you comprehend the real meaning of the message of what is being delivered.
5- AVOID SIDE-TALKING
Side-talking is one of the main problems that hinders effective listening. Many students in the classroom fall into this trap. When the essential and important of the message is being passed then many are busy Side talking with friends or co-mates. Avoid this attitude if you tend to be a great listener.
6- AVOID COMBATIVE LISTENING
As defined above, combative listening is not in any form a good way to be a great listener. Listening in a combative or competitive manner shows such listener had prepared an attack ahead of delivery or wishes the speaker to make mistake so that he can take the floor.
7- DEFER YOUR JUDGEMENT
Don’t be in haste to judge the speaker. In addition, this attitude is a form of interruption during the talk which is not good at all. We are humans which are bound to make mistakes, so allow the speaker to finish his message before saying anything. Interruption while talking frustrates the speaker and also directly or indirectly hinders your level of understanding. Mind you, you neither gain nothing nor adding nothing by attacking the speaker, therefore, defer whatever your judgment about the speaker.
Finally, I think you have gained at least one or two things in this piece of work. Don’t be a selfish listeners or reader, for this kindly share it with other people on social media.