As a so-called flaming extrovert, I love to talk! I've always been outgoing in that way in my quest to really connect with people. I'm interested in who they are, fascinated by their experiences, and love bonding on an intimate one-on-one level.
And in addition to my outgoing talkative nature, one of the greatest things I've learned is how to listen. And I mean REALLY listen.
This skill has served me well as a professional speaker, leadership strategist, and workshop facilitator. Listening is an essential component of serving my global clients. By practicing my listening skills I’ve learned how to:
1. Be present and available
When someone is speaking to me, I give them my undivided attention, listen intently, and show respect by acknowledging what they are saying.
2. Show empathy
Demonstrating understanding and support is important in any conversation. When I show empathy, it allows my clients to feel heard and understood without judgement.
3. Encourage a deeper discussion
It opens the way for my clients to be able to express their thoughts more fully.
4. Resist the urge to interrupt
Extroverts always love to talk. 😊 However, interrupting can be seen as disrespectful and makes it difficult for others to continue expressing their thoughts or feelings in a meaningful way. So, I’ve learned to be patient and wait until they finish.
The way we communicate is constantly changing, but the importance of being an active and empathetic listener will always remain. It is one of the most important parts of a successful relationship.
Listening is a skill that can be honed with practice and doing so has helped build stronger relationships with the people around me - in turn supporting my clients in achieving next-level success!