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ACTIVE LISTENING

Active or Reflective Listening is a relationship building tool that helps the listener provide support and validation to the speaker. Active Listening allows the speaker to clarify their understanding of their own thoughts, feelings, and attitudes and to arrive at their own solutions. Individuals who come to their own solutions are more invested in them as each individual is the biggest expert on their own life. For the listener active listening is how empathy is developed.

 

ACTIVE LISTENING TIPS

 

1.     Listen with total attention

2.     Maintain good eye contact

3.     Keep an open posture

4.     Keep them talking (uhuh, yeah, ok, you were saying, and then what happened)

5.     Ask clarifying questions

6.     Withhold judgment

7.     Reflect back to the speaker both the content and the emotions you are hearing

 

ACTIVE LISTENING IS NOT

 

1.     Advice giving

2.     Problem solving

3.     Swapping war stories or toppers

 

An example from literature:

 

“For Byers paid close attention, helping him on by little nods and eye narrowings and pursing of lips and voiced brief agreements and comments…”       – Fritz Lieber

Categories: feelings, health
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