Listening skills refers to understanding the communication attentively and connecting it according to the situation. However, as per the research most of the time, people listen more than they actually speak. You must develop good listening skills to understand conversation in a proper manner and reply effectively.
What’s for you?
- How to improve listening skills
- Ten Principles of effective listening
- Best apps for Enhance your listening skills
It is the process of receiving the information accurately and understanding it in the communication process. In short, Listening skills also play a very important role in the communication process also.
The more you practice listening, the more you become a master in it. As you may see sometimes, many people are not interested in listening, the communication skills of such people are also poor. Some people don’t know how to listen, everyone is interested in speaking, and without listening to what you are going to say doesn’t make sense.
In every situation how to know what the reaction should be? Above all, You will only know when you listen to it carefully. Therefore, Sometimes after listening, silence could be the best answer depending on the situation only after careful listening.
Communication is all about understanding the other person and not about winning an argument or forcing your opinions on others. In short, to understand the other person you need good listening skills.
How to improve listening skills
Listening skill is very important as it is also a part of language skills. If you are going to learn a new language, you must listen to communication in that language so you can easily learn the language faster and better. You have to be fully present in communication if you want to be an active listener. To clarify, Fully present I mean to say physically, mentally, and emotionally. Above all, Effective listening is a very important part of the communication process.
Now the basic question comes “How to listen effectively?”
The answer is quite simple as it is hidden under its name LISTEN. The first three characters are LIS, revere it as SIL, and shuffle the remaining characters as it makes SILENCE. You can’t listen unless and until you are silent. If you listen carefully then the possibility of understanding the conversion increases.
And you react or reply accordingly after understanding it properly if you listen with silence. Then your reply makes sense and the others will listen.
“Listening is not the same as hearing” as in hearing, sound is being entered in your ears and it happens automatically. You have to do nothing while hearing as simple as that. On the other hand, In Listening you have to be attentive, it means paying attention not only to the sound but paying attention to body language, paying attention to feelings of the speaker also.
How to be a good listener?
This is the commonly asked question and I am trying to answer it in the best possible manner. The basic attitude of the people is earning attitude instead of learning attitude. If you have a learning attitude then only you can pay attention to the speaker. you want to grow, not in terms of money but in terms of knowledge and learning.
You can enjoy communication with a person who is growing constantly in terms of knowledge and learning. Learning nature helps a person to listen carefully to the speaker as it also increases the observation power also.
Practice, Practice, Practice!
All you need is to do practice a lot as listening also helps speed up your English speaking. It develops a habit of thinking in English as well. Moreover, You can read as many stories or podcasts available online for free and can easily enhance your listening skills.
If you want to learn English speaking quickly, check it out.
Ten Principles of effective listening
Effective listening not only means to listen only to verbal messages. It also includes body language and Inconsistencies between verbal and no verbal messages. An active listener also catches the partly world said and understands the meaning of what the speaker was trying to say.
Here are 10 principles of effective listening are:
Don’t interrupt while talking:
Listen silently what the speaker is saying and don’t interrupt him in the middle. Let them complete their and when the speaker finished talking you may need to clarify to ensure you have received their message accurately.
Prepare yourself to listen:
Focus on the speaker and put other things out of mind while listening to the speaker. However, the human mind can easily be distracted by many other thoughts like what’s in the lunch or how much time is left in closing the office, etc. Try to focus on the messages which are communicating.
Put the speaker at ease:
Above all, Help the speaker feel free to speak as try to maintain eye contact and try not to stare at him if something is wrong.
Focus on the speaker and don’t do any interruptions like look out the window or pick your fingernails etc as a result it may send a message to the speaker that you are not interested in communication and are feeling bored.
Try to understand others points of view and look at the issues from their perspective. If the speaker says something you disagree with, instead of arguing, just keep an open mind to the views and opinions of others as well.
For example, sometimes a speaker may take a pause for formulating a sentence or for how to speak and you just have to be patient and let them continue their conversation without interrupting them. Patience is the key and it helps to increase your listening skills.
Avoid personal Prejudice:
Don’t be irritated by the speaker as everyone has their own style of talking, some might have a lack of confidence and some may be shy while speaking, just don’t let them make their habit and try to ignore their style of conveying messages.
Listen to the tone:
As good speakers use the voice and tone matched to gain the attention of the audience, therefore, it helps you to understand the emphasis of what is being said.
Listen for ideas – Not just words:
The most difficult aspect of listening is the ability to link together pieces of information so as to reveal the ideas of others. With proper concentration letting go of distractions and focus, therefore this becomes easier.
Wait and watch for Non-Verbal communication:
Gestures, facial expressions, and eye movements can all reveal the additional information as we do not just listen from your ears but also from eyes and transmit the non-verbal communication as well.
Also read: Benefits of Spoken English.
Best apps for Enhance your listening skills
There are a lot of apps available you can use in your smartphone to enhance your listening skills. You can listen to podcasts as well as stories etc on your smartphone when you are free. Although podcasts are in huge trending nowadays among Americans. Listening skills also needed in cracking the IELTS exam as well. You can enjoy it while listening, as there are many podcasts available on cricket or football as well.
Here are some recommended apps which you can use to enhance your listening skills:
This is the high rated app on play store and AppStore where you can listen to free online music and podcasts streaming. You just search your interest in the search bar of the app as a result this provides you a list of hundreds of thousands of music and podcasts.
Spotify also offers thousands of podcasts including Spotify originals that you can’t find anywhere else. Spotify is considered as the best app as it can help in enhancing your listening skills. You can just avail of a paid subscription to avoid listening ads that may interrupt you while using Spotify.
Storytel is also the high rated app as users gave it 4.2 stars rating out of 5 on play store. Here you can find tens of thousands of audiobooks and ebooks for free. Just search the name of the book, find its audiobook version, and start listening. during free time or while driving.
You can enjoy unlimited listening of audiobooks in English and other languages also and can also avail of a paid subscription to avoid listening ads that may interrupt you while listening to the stories.
Audible is also another best app you can use to enhance your listening skills. It is just similar to Spotify and Storytel to some extent. As you may not find the music here just like in Spotify but you can listen to the world’s largest selection of audiobooks and original podcasts.
You can also download the audiobooks and can listen to it while commuting, at home, or driving. Just take your pick from the world’s largest collection and start listening.
Also read: Best apps for Enhance your Reading skills
Listening plays a very important role in grooming your English. So try to enhance your Listening skills with the help of various applications and become a perfect listener as it minimizes the risk of wrong understanding.
The 3 A’s of active listening are attitude, attention, and adjustment.
The purpose of listening is to gain information in the proper manner without any misunderstanding and it enhances the communication process as well.
It has many benefits. Effective listening helps to resolve conflicts, build trust, inspire people, and strengthen teams.