Listening is an art of paying undivided attention to understand whatever is being said. It is the most essential part of communication and a true sign of leadership because people feel valued and offer their loyalty. However, most of the people do not listen, which leads misunderstanding to grow in relationships. They come with a negative mindset, preconceived notion and rush for evaluation to pronounce their judgment. They often end up making uninformed decisions. That is why, to get the respect of others and make better decisions it is utmost important to be a good listener.
There is a big difference between hearing and listening. Hearing is a natural phenomenon. You do not need to put any kind of effort for hearing. Whenever someone speaks, the generated sound waves reach without any effort from your end. However, hearing does not guarantee that you understand whatever is being said. On the other hand, the moment you pay attention to whatever you hear then it become listening. You make use of your mind to understand whatever is being said. In a nutshell, listening is all about dedication your focused attention to understand whatever is being said.
The advantage of being a good listener is manifold. It creates the environment of respect and care. Listening improves your interpersonal relationships. When you listen, people will feel respected, and they will reciprocate the same. Listening empowers you to see the situations from other's point of view and gather the requisite information to make better decisions in life. Listening helps you know more about people, which will be useful in your personal and professional life and that in turn, make your life better and enriching.
To be a good listener, you need to be in the present moment. You cannot listen unless you apply your mind to understand whatever is being said. In other words, listening is not possible when the mind is engaged in needless chatter like evaluating the speaker or formulating a response while listening. Any kind of prejudice, preconceived notion or negative mindset prevents you from listening carefully and understanding the speaker. That is why; you should make your mind clutter free to be a good listener.
To conclude, everyone wants to be heard, and this is the basic instinct of human being. Maybe you can think you know a lot about the speaker and the subject but no matter how much you know you cannot know everything. So, it is idle to listen first and then compose your response. Listening will broaden your horizon and increase your knowledge. You will be in a better position to act with improved knowledge and visualize the situations from other's point of view. So be a good listener to improve your personal as well as professional relations and have a successful life.