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7 Active Listening Exercises To Become A Better Listener

Active listening excercises

Active Listening Exercises you need to know for those who know the benefits and how successful people are good listeners first.

It’s quite sad that we have become caught up in our own stuff so much that you have forgotten how important being a good listener is. You might have come across the term “listening skills” quite a few times.

You might be wondering ‘Why is something that I do every day, and that too subconsciously, considered as a valuable  soft skill?’

A lot of people are yet to understand that simply hearing what’s going on is very different from active listening.

The three As of active listening are-

  • Attitude: It can make a world of difference when it comes to conversations. Having a positive attitude helps in making great conversations. Do not make preconceived notions.

  •  Attention: It goes without saying, to understand what the speaker is trying to say, you have to pay attention to what is being told to you. If you are attentive then you will understand the message being conveyed to you. This prevents disagreements.

  •  Adjustment: This is related to the first one, attitude. If you assume things about the speaker then you are not going to listen with an open mind. For example – You enter a discussion with someone, but you have made up your mind to disagree and fight with them. No matter how many valid points they make, you will tend to ignore their side of the story.

active listening

You are active listening, you tune out everything else that is going on and actually focus on what is being told to you.

Active listening means concentrating, comprehending, and responding because the listener was making a conscious effort to do so.

Contrary to what we might believe, communication is not all about speaking. In fact, communication is more of listening rather than speaking, listening makes up to about 80% of all communication.

There are numerous benefits of Active Listening Exercises ->

  1. The most obvious one is that it enhances your personal and professional relationships. That is because understanding what the speaker’s message avoids disagreements and misunderstanding.

  2. Enhances your knowledge.

  3. Increases your concentration and attention span.

  4. Building and strengthening meaningful relationships on the professional and personal front.

  5. It makes identifying and solving problems easier.

Like most skills, active listening can also be built with practice and efforts.

Here are some Active Listening Exercises that can help you build your active listening skills. This is going to prove as an asset, both professionally and personally.

  • JULIAN TREASURE’S 5 WAYS TO LISTEN BETTER

As the world is getting increasingly loud, We are losing our listening.

Julian Treasure tells us that we are becoming less and less attentive with the increasing distractions in the world. There is a problem, there is a solution.

active listening

Julian Treasure 5 ways to listen to better->

  1. SILENCE

We have become quite used to speaking up more than needed. Treasure preaches us to practice being silent. Spend at least 3 minutes a day being silent. This is a great way to recalibrate your ears and practice active listening more. To enhance our listening, our ears need tuning first. One of the most Active Listening Exercises.

  1. MIXER

Sometimes we do not appreciate the beautiful sounds that the world has to offer. We rather complain about cacophony. For this exercise, sit outside and close your eyes. Now try to focus on specific sounds in the mixture of sounds going on. For example, you can focus on the chirping of the birds or the sound of the waves on a beach. Exercise is great because it improves your focus and listening power.

  1. Savor

More than often, we ignore the simple pleasures in life. Similarly, we tend to ignore how interesting the most mundane sounds are. For this exercise, take a few moments from your day and try to take pleasure in the most simple sounds. It can be the folding of your morning newspaper or the sound of coffee pouring into your cup.

ASMR  enthusiasts will agree that sounds like this are absolutely therapeutic. ASMR videos of people whispering, cutting soap, etc are proved to be aesthetically pleasing to listeners. It has a positive effect on the health of the listener.

  1. ADJUST LISTENING POSITIONS

You can either indulge in active/passive listening or critical/empathetic listening.  You must decide your listening position according to how the situation demands it. Now you must keep the barriers in mind And adjust your listening position. These barriers include culture, beliefs, relation to whom you are conversing with etcetera. Being conscious about your listening position and adjusting it helps a great deal with active listening skills.

  1. RASA

Rasa is the Sanskrit word for essence. It is also Julian Treasure’s acronym for the art of listening

R – RECEIVE

Attention to the person who is speaking in order to receive the message they are trying to convey.

A – APPRECIATE

A little appreciation goes a long way. Make affirmative sounds like oh, hmm to let the speaker know that you are paying attention. You can use gestures like nodding your head as well.

S – SUMMARISE

After the speaker is done talking, say “SO, …..” and echo back what they just said. This is not only a way of letting the person know that you were listening to them, but also so it will clear up misunderstandings if any.

  • BLINDFOLDED CONVERSATIONS

Exercise works well if it’s done with a group of people who don’t know each other. Everyone puts on a blindfold and volunteers jumble them up in pairs. The person conducting the exercise may give a few pointers. On the basis of these, the conversation can be steered in a certain direction. One can talk about anything, from the weather to their Five Year Plan. Each partner gets a turn to be a speaker as well as a listener. This is a great exercise because there is no fear of being judged.

  • LISTEN TO PODCASTS

Developing soft skills should not always be boring. There’s is actually quite an interesting way of improving your active listening skills. And that is listening to podcasts. They are so great because you can find a podcast about any topic under the sun. You can learn so much through a podcast while being thoroughly entertained. They are easily accessible as well.

Active Listening Exercises you need to know for those who know the benefits and how successful people are good listeners first.

What are four examples of active listening?

Building trust, eye contact, leaning forward and verbal affirmations.

What are the 3 A’s of active listening?

Attitude, attention and adjustment

How do you practice active listening?

By speaking less and listening more.

What is an active listening activity?

When you fully concentrate, understand and respond.

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