Active listening refers to the process by which a person has that listening skill and is able to develop a form of communication that will allow him/her to reach out to another person by fully hearing what that person is trying to say. Since listening and communication are essential elements which can help improve relationships, in order for a couple to be successful in their relationship, they must communicate and listen in a meaningful way.
Allow time for the other person to speak
By letting the other person speak, this takes effort at your end to refrain yourself from doing these actions: arguing your case while the other person is stating his/her position, resist the urge to interrupt and cut off the other person speaking, and when you control yourself on these, you will be talking less, but you allow yourself to listen well on the other person’s explanation and, therefore, provide both a communication and listening avenue to you and the other person.
By allowing yourself to be in the other person’s shoes, you are actually prioritizing to focus more on the other person’s emotional needs during the dialogue and, doing this, will help you understand better the other person’s perspective, which can help you be an active listener.
Avoid making final judgments
When you are in the middle of a dialogue with a person, try as much as possible to avoid making final judgments on the other person because this indicates that you already have a pre-existing belief about the person and that blocks you from doing an active listening and, therefore, you just have to avoid this negative thought by clearing your mind of this preconceived belief and instead focus more on positively resolving your relationship issues.
Take time to inquire
During the process of communication and listening to each other, when the other person has finished his/her position, it’s time to ask questions for clarification purposes, but don’t set the tone of asking questions like you are making accusations, and when the other person answers your questions, listen well to determine the truth of his/her statements.
Rephrase what the other person says
Part of making clear with issues that are in the process of being resolved through a dialogue is to paraphrase what the other person says, not to be rude about it but to confirm whether you heard all of the other person’s statements right; doing this makes you to communicate back the points he/she has made objectively and the exchange of conversation that comes with this can help you continue to be an active listener. Being an effective communicator means you are also learning how to listen just as much as you need to learn to speak, so that when you are in a dialogue to resolve a relationship, by focusing on what the other person is saying will actually allow you to put yourself in a good position to understand more the situation and this is a result of listening correctly, which means that you are learning more on the issue concerned.