He who knows, does not speak.
He who speaks, does not know.
We have been talking about communication. We now come to the “final” step in good communication.
Now, it is has come time for you to breathe and respond.
The breath gives you time to focus. It also gives you a chance to relax any physical tension you may have built up in the telling of the tale.
In the beginning of your response you must demonstrate your focus by repeating the important or salient points of the story. What you hope to show is that you have paid attention, that they matter and that you genuinely care. This also gives the speaker a final opportunity to make any corrections.
Once you are certain that you have the story correct, you can cogitate and ruminate for a bit; and give an appropriate and suitable answer.
Communication is a dance, and a slow one at that. In our fast-paced world, no one has much time to listen. And, in fact many have forgotten how to listen to other people.
These are really simple, but important, skills that we need to re-master. As the saying goes, “this is not rocket science.” But, like everything else in life that you wish to do well in or be good at, if you do not practice, or you do not exercise, you stand to lose all of your good graces, manners, and the appearance of having common sense and decency.
Good communications drill
Listen. All senses focused.
Engage them with words to them help finish their story.
Ask questions to clarify.
Make the time or take the time to make the time, take the time to listen. Practice with someone when it is not a critical conversation. Practice at a time when the stakes are not huge. And, yes, you will mess up, and its okay. You don’t even need to tell the other person that you are practicing with them, just put your phone down when you are with them. and give them your attention. Give them your full face and your full attention.
Then perhaps, you will be ready when the conversation is crucially important.
What would you add to these steps?