Suppose you want to learn more about communication. If so, you might study the benefits of speaking up but forget the advantages of speaking less. When you talk less, you listen more, which can help you in several ways.
When you stop speaking, you hear things you didn’t know
You talk about things you know. When you are quiet, though, and listen intently, you learn. Listening allows you to glean knowledge from people. They might want to impart life-changing wisdom or provide a helpful tidbit that improves your day. But you might not glean sage-like advice if you speak rather than listen.
Speaking less is especially significant at the beginning of business conversations. For example, you might want to gather data about a client before forging a deal. Or you may benefit from letting a potential customer speak so you can find out what they need.
Speaking less and listening more is also useful when communicating with friends and family. Too much talking prevents you from understanding others and discovering how they feel or recognizing their challenges. When you listen well, you can support those you love and provide help and valuable feedback.
Speaking less provides time to think
Can you talk and think simultaneously? Of course, you can enjoy a stream of consciousness whereby one thought leads to another. You are somewhat aware of your surroundings as you speak too.
Nonetheless, you can think more clearly when you listen. Your mind isn’t so busy, and you have space to consider how to reply and refine what you want to say next.
Listening more can make you appear wise
While listening doesn’t make you more intelligent, it can make you seem wiser than when you talk a great deal. People instinctively know good listeners glean more knowledge than individuals who constantly speak. So, when you let others talk and nod and cock your head to one side occasionally, you’re likely to give the impression you’re sage-like.
Speaking less makes you more likable
Most people enjoy talking about themselves, and they own the stage when you listen to them. With no competition to steal the limelight, they can take pleasure in their favorite subject.
Most people warm to superb listeners because being listened to helps them feel extra-likable. After all, why would anyone give them such intense attention unless they liked them?
Possibly, you’ll hear advice about being assertive and having your say, but remember the benefits of listening too. Add being a remarkable listener to your communication skill set, and you’ll enjoy the rewards.