Ever since I was teen, I decided that most people didn't have anything interesting to say.
Although I wasn't wrong, I took the thought too literally.
I stopped engaging as much with people and entertained myself with my own thoughts.
This was a mistake.
For a long time I neglected my communication skills.
I'd only half-listen to people and would only focus on the task at hand.
Although this isn't entirely bad, I've missed plenty of opportunities to build a connection.
Most people try to listen intently with their ears. They hear what a person has to say and take it at face value.
But the words we say are only part of the puzzle.
You Must Open Your Eyes
At every moment you are communicating a message with your body.
Your true emotions always show through your body language, a glimpse at a time.
As someone speaks, watch their eyes, hands, and feet.
Listen to the tonality of their voice.
Notice how these factors change alongside what they're speaking about.
Did he scratch his lower back and raise his pitch as he told you about a high-paying job opportunity?
Did she stop smiling and tense her arms up when you went over the financing?
Although they may respond with positive words, their bodies say otherwise.
Open Your Eyes To Build A Connection
It's fun to try and read someone's mind by their body language. And it's easier to hold a conversation when you do this too.
You'll notice physical ticks as they speak. Take note of what they say as they tick.
Then ask them about it and interpret if the subject creates a positive or negative emotional reaction.
You'll learn how to read a person's feelings. You can even ask them why they seem "a certain way" about a subject.
When You Use Your Eyes & Ears, You Are Present
You will be entirely in the moment.
Because you're paying attention to as close to 100% of their communication as you can.
This is a skill that takes real effort.
As opposed to a measly 40% if you were to only pay attention with your ears.
Or the pitiful 20% you put in when you only half listen.
Don't make my mistake and turn inwards. Instead turn outwards.
Until next time,