Is it just me or are more and more people distracted these days? Is the art of conversation getting lost?
Recently I caught up with an older friend and we had a lovely cuppa a chat for an hour or so. They said how nice it was to genuinely converse, feel heard and felt that I was truly listening to them. They felt, as an older person, that times had changed and that may people these days seemed so self-involved and distracted. Sadly, all I could do was agree. Are we communicating well? Are we listening, actively engaging in real conversation and genuinely caring about others or are we thinking that we don’t have time and that we are too busy?
At the end of the day, we all want to feel valued and heard, what can we do to make sure our interactions are positive, two way and leave those around us feeling respected?
I thought of these tips…. see what you think??
- Look at the person, show you are listening and hear them.
- Inquisitive – be inquisitive, there is nothing worse than a one-way conversation when the person we talk to just talks about themselves
- Stop/side by side – Stop, put down that device, turn off the tv and pay attention. Conversely, side by side chat can be a great way to communicate. Studies have shown that chatting whilst driving, walking, doing a task side by side together can be beneficial. Males in particular can really enjoy this style of communication and they don’t feel put on the spot or feel like they are being interrogated. You just have to make sure you are still paying attention.
- Time – actually devote your time to the chat and if you can’t reschedule, make another time where you can pay attention and really listen
- Empathy – Treat other as you want to be treated when communicating. Listen, interact, make sure the person feels heard, respected and valued.
- Next time- when you truly pay attention you will hear what your friend, family member, colleagues are up to and next time you chat you can check in with them and get up dates, this was they truly know that you listened to them.
Can you make more time and communicate in a more positive way?