Listening is one of our most important communication skills, but also the one we spend the least amount of time developing. Think about it. Parents spend so much time in a child’s formative years teaching that child how to speak, read, and write. Then the child goes off to school and spends more time learning and practicing how to speak, read, and write. However, nowhere along the way are we taught HOW to listen well. Therefore, when people tell us, “listen to me,” or “you need to listen better,” we really don’t know how. As a result, we experience a lot of negative outcomes because without listening, communication can’t occur.
Awhile back I came across this funny video on YouTube that always reminds me how frustrating it is to everyone involved when we don’t listen and when we feel like others aren’t listening well to us. The video resonated with so many people that it has gotten more than 50 million views and won the little boy and his mom a trip to the Ellen DeGeneres show and a check for $10,000!
The bottom line is: it doesn’t matter if you’re three or thirty, you can always improve upon your listening skills. And for those of you who have read to this point and are thinking, “This doesn’t apply to me. I’m a good listener…”
“Listen to me, Linda.” I guarantee you’re not listening as well as you could be.
This week, I challenge you to make improving your listening skills your #1 priority. To help give you some motivation, this Thursday’s blog post will include a video for you. In it, I’ll present you with a listening quiz that will PROVE to you that you need to do more work to be a better listener.
P.S. I’m hoping after you take the quiz, you’ll decide to make improving your listening a priority. If you do, here are some links to my most popular blog posts on listening. Check them out and then feel free to comment on any of them or contact me if you have questions or need more information.