3 Types of Reflective Listening that Can Transform Your Relationships

5961100771_9cb408c6c6_bEffective listening will dramatically enhance your relationships in all areas of your life. We train people in the art and science of generous listening to be Talent Catalysts in powerful Talent Catalyst Conversations. You can use these same Talent Catalyst skills in every aspect of your life.

Typical interactions fall short because our listening becomes routine and full of assumptions. We think we know what people are saying. We may even assume that we know what they will say.

Generous, reflective listening transforms relationships to be more engaging and rewarding. It gets beyond the assumptions and superficial exchanges to deeper truths.

You can transform your relationships by using three types of reflective listening.

  • Reflect the words. Simply repeat or paraphrase the words the other person said. This may sound awfully basic, but you will be surprised at how beautifully it gives a person the chance to clarify his or her own thoughts.
  • Reflect the feeling. Let the speaker know what emotion you hear in his or her voice. For example, “It sounds like you may be feeling some frustration with that.”
  • Reflect hopes or needs. Explore what the person’s deeper hopes or aspirations may be. For example, “Sounds like you need to know you’ve done your best.”

How can these reflections transform your relationships?

The quality of your relationships has a direct correlation to how much people think they matter when they’re with you. When you take the time to reflect meaning, feelings, and hopes, people know that they matter and often become more open to exploring fresh ways of looking at important issues.

Habitual ways of listening become familiar ruts. It may take a bit of effort to become an effective generous listener. Are your relationships worth it?

 Photo by: Bindaas Madhavi


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