Listen, Really Listen

On April 14th, 2011, posted in: Serious topics by 1 Comment
A big part of listening is shutting up so that your niece has a chance to talk.
But it’s hard to do.
She mentions something, which triggers a related image in your mind and then you want to talk about what just popped up in your head.
It’s normal behavior, but it doesn’t help your niece open up and keep talking.
To give her all the room she needs to keep the conversation going, try the 3:1 rule.
Your niece gets to say three things before you get to say one, then she gets three more.
Your one thing might be a question or follow on to what she just said, to give her the opportunity to expand and expound.
The 3:1 listening ratio takes a bit of practice, but it’s worth it.
So rarely does anybody ever really listen.  Many (most) conversations aren’t really all that productive.  In turn, each listener is waiting for the speaker to finish so he can start talking.
With kids, this style is deadly.  One or two rounds of that and they get it that you really aren’t listening, but instead just awaiting to talk.  So they clam up and wander off.
Who wouldn’t?
Try the 3:1 listening ratio and see if you don’t become a hero, just for really listening.

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