Mindful listening can help you vastly improve your relationships by removing mental roadblocks. When you listen mindfully to your partner, friend, family member, or colleague, it can improve your understanding of their needs, and help you to learn compassion for others, and reduce frustration for both the sender and receiver.
Mindful Listening: Become A Better Listener Using Mindfulness
Mindfulness listening can REALLY make a difference in terms of how connected and fulfilled we feel (here’s a video with a little more on that if you’re interested: ). So if you’re interested in becoming a better listener, here are some techniques for mindful listening that can really help!
How often do you hear the phrase “you never listen to me” tossed around? That’s because listening has become something that a lot of people fail to do well. By failing to listen, we don’t connect with other people as deeply as we should.
1. One of the reasons why we fail to listen to people is because we fail to listen to ourselves. We’re so busy and so distracted that it’s easy to get lost inside our own heads and constantly move on to the next thought, the next task, and the next person.
How to Practice Mindful Listening: HEAR
- HALT — Halt whatever you are doing and offer your full attention.
- ENJOY — Enjoy a breath as you choose to receive whatever is being communicated to you—wanted or unwanted.
- ASK — Ask yourself if you really know what they mean and if you don’t, ask for clarification. Instead of making assumptions, bring openness and curiosity to the interaction. You might be surprised at what you discover.
- REFLECT — Reflect back to them what you heard. This tells them that you were really listening.
Mindful Listening Can Help You Learn How To Listen Effectively
2. When you fail to listen to other people, part of the problem can be because you have something that you need or that you want to say to the other person. Your mind is busy formulating how you feel about the conversation. If you’re someone who struggles to listen well, one of the key symptoms of this trait is if you cut people off as they’re talking.
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Asking genuine questions that you are truly interested in helping the speaker explore their feelings and experiences instead of asserting their own ideas and advice is a good way to keep the door open for being a mindful listener. Try asking real interest in their questions next time someone shares something meaningful with you instead of offering advice or talking over them about your own experiences with what they are going through at this time in their lives.
Another sign is if you’ve already decided what to say while the person is still in the middle of speaking. You’re more focused on being heard than you are listening. Mindful listening involves not allowing yourself to have a preformed opinion of what the other person is saying before they finish what they’re saying.
3. Mindful listening means paying attention to their words, their emotions, and trying to understand the other person. When you listen mindfully, it lets the other person feel safe enough to express what they’re thinking and feeling because they know they’re going to be heard.
Someone who is able to be a mindful listener first learns how to focus within himself. To listen mindfully means that you tune in to yourself first and then you’re able to hear others as they need to be heard.
Mindfulness Allows You To Be A More Receptive Listener
4. It allows you to show more support for the other person. When you’re a mindful listener, it means that you keep your focus on the conversation without reacting. You keep control over your thoughts by not pre-judging the other person’s intent before you’ve even had a chance to hear them out. Mindful listening also helps you to keep your emotion focused on the present with the person you’re speaking with.
This is especially helpful when you’re talking to someone that you’ve had issues within the past. When you learn the art of mindful listening, it allows you to first self-focus so that you’re able to focus on others. By understanding yourself, you can be more genuine with other people. There are many benefits to being a mindful listener. When you do, you’ll find that people appreciate you more both in your private life and in your professional life.
5. You’ll be able to motivate people and handle conflict more effectively. You’ll also be able to handle the stress more effectively that can occur when you’re dealing with people that it’s hard to communicate.
Mindful listening will help you be able to clarify what you’ve heard so there is less miscommunication at home and at work.