Allow others to express themselves without judgement.
It is rare that we feel listened to. Like, really listened to. With all the technology and social media platforms in our lives, we have so much 'noise' coming at us all the time and our attention becomes scattered. There is so much to take in that we stop truly listening to others. And, conversely, we feel like we aren't being heard by others.
How many times have you had your conversation partner interject with their own experience or start to offer advice, when all that you wanted was for them to listen?
Listen without judgement.
Listen with an open heart.
And how many times have you spoken over the top of someone or tried to fix their problem before they had finished explaining it?
Listening to another person is one of the greatest gifts we can give them. Because by listening we are saying: I see you, I hear you, I love you.
So when someone appears before us, vulnerable and opening up their soul, we must give them the gift of being an active listener.
In return we need to learn to say to others 'I just need you to listen right now'.
Because sometimes just speaking about the problem is enough. We don’t need advice, we don’t need someone to try and ‘fix’ our problem. Articulating how we are feeling—even if it's in a long, rambling way—helps us. It lifts the burden from our shoulders.
And we know that we are seen, heard and loved.