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How to Connect Everytime as You Listen at All Levels

By Sandy Schroeder

Most of us know communication is central to our lives at home, at work, and out in the world, but we may need to sharpen our skills to really connect every time.

The first step is to actively listen – Most of us actually try to listen, but it is all too easy to bounce off of the other person’s words, thinking about what we will say next. Really listen to see what the individual wants to tell you, and why they are telling you this.

The next step is to ask questions – If you are really listening you will have questions, and probably want to learn more. That can be the beginning of a productive interchange in which you both profit as you actually listen to each other and exchange information.

The third step is emotional intelligence – The dictionary definition of emotional intelligence is “the capacity to be aware of, control and express one’s emotions, handling interpersonal relationships judiciously and empathetically.”

That’s quite a mouthful; loosely translated it means having the ability to understand our own emotions and control them as we reach out to be responsive to the emotions of others. People who study communication will tell you there are vibrations beyond the spoken words in every conversation. If you are able to pick up on the speaker’s emotional state, you have just added another dimension to your skills.

Think of recent conversations you might have had with your child, spouse, co-worker or neighbor. In each case you may or may not have been actively listening, responding with questions, and catching the emotional vibrations that surrounded the words.

On the Playing Field

Think about how those exchanges turned out, and see how you did. Sometimes I find I am right on target, reading the other person’s body language, voice inflections and choice of words. Other times, if my own emotional vibrations are not up to par, I may not respond as well as I could.

The more focus and skill power we develop, the more it will pay off everywhere we go.

A former boss of mine was a skilled player. He would enter a meeting and play his communication skills like a violin. He quickly read the emotional intelligence of others, tailoring his responses to fit. Then he had an open door to sail his message through. Needless to say, he scored at all levels with his staff, colleagues, and numerous other contacts.

Practice may almost make us perfect. At least it will give us a much stronger advantage when we are out there. Learn as you go. As you zero in with active listening, real questions, and Emotional Quotient readings, expect results.

To learn more about your health and wellness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Maple Grove, Minn.

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