People don’t understand what you say… they understand what they hear.
People live inside their heads. There’s a lot of noise going on besides just what you’re saying; both on the outside and the inside. It’s amazing we can communicate at all.
Keeping that in mind will help you reach out. Learning to hear, and to be heard, will teach you how to truly connect to those around you.
Stop your own noise
You’ve got your own chatter box going a mile a minute in your head. In fact, you way ahead of the conversation as you speak. Try to keep up with your own conversation; stay closer to your present moment.
Say what you mean
And, of course, mean what you say. Just make sure you are as clear, concise and honest in what you’re saying as you possibly can.
You say more than words
Your facial expressions, tone and body language all say stuff… even more than your words do. That’s actually part of what the other person is “hearing.” As long as you are sincere, all the rest will be aligned with your words.
Double check that they haven’t checked out
People give off a lot of clues whether they’re listening or not. Pay attention. If you’re not getting feedback that they’re “with you” stop and ask.
Hear them too
Remember that chatter box in your head is still going at it; you’re rapidly searching for a response to the other person. Listen to what they’re saying; to make sure you’re connecting. Remember that what they have to say is as important as what you have to say… so give them the same gift of hearing them.
Say no more than you have to
To connect, a person just has to “get it” … beyond that, it’s just more noise.
Like this last sentence.