Exercise: How to improve your listening skills?
The Listening skills exercise has two parts (A and B). You can do just one or both exercises.
- REFLECTION TASK – reflect on your own experiences
Reflect on your own experiences of listening in different communication situations. Recall an interaction situation from the past few days (at work or home) where you feel you were listened to particularly well. Alternatively, you can recall an interaction situation where you feel you were not listened to well. It can be a one-on-one conversation, or a group discussion, such as a meeting. Reflect on your experiences through the following questions:
- What kind of situation was it? Who were involved?
- How did you feel in the situation and afterwards?
- How did good listening manifest itself and what was the result?
- Or how did bad listening manifested itself? How would you have liked to have been listened to?
- How do you evaluate your own communication behavior in the situation?
You can also reflect on your own experiences and perceptions of listening on a general level:
- What do you think good listening is like? How does it manifest itself in interaction?
- What kind of listener are you?
- What is the importance of listening in your work?
- In what situations do you think listening is particularly important?
- What can result from good or bad listening?
- How could you improve your own listening skills?
- CHALLENGE YOURSELF AND BECOME A BETTER LISTENER
- Check out the list of good and bad listening habits (click the link below). Pick at least one thing from the list where you could improve as a listener. International Listening Association - Are You Listening?
- During the next week, choose at least one interaction situation (at work or in your free time) where you consciously focus on listening to the other person talking.
- After the interaction situation, you can reflect on the following things:
- Where did I succeed? What could I have done differently?
- How did I express listening?
- Was listening easy or difficult?
- What made listening easier or harder?
- How did the other party react and experience the interaction situation?
- Did the exercises give you some insights about listening that you could put into practice in the future as well and became a better listener?