Have you ever wondered why counselors seem to have all the answers?
For one thing, when you pay them a visit, you find yourself doing most of the talking!

Secondly, and lest you forget, they also happen to be avid listeners, nodding to every statement you make with very few interruptions.
This is why I have come to the conclusion, and I am sure some of you will agree with me, that counselors take time to understand your problem and therefore their responses will most of the time come close to addressing your concerns.

Considering how much listening counselors do, brings me to look at one of our most frequent failures as human beings. We become so intense in expressing our opinions, we often forget to listen to what the other person or persons are saying.

As part of my own personal development, I have learned to give audience to any one person I am have a conversation with. They will have my full attention. The Dalai Lama, a spiritual leader of the Tibetan people once said, “When you talk you are only repeating what you already know but if you listen, you may learn something new.”

The biggest challenge in communication is the fact that we don’t listen enough to each other. Behavioral change communication basically focuses on communication strategy that can cause the desired change in a given society. The second and most important stage in this type of communication is to understand your intended public.
This brings me back to my earlier point about ‘listening’. Life is a continuous process of ‘Behavioural change.’ Every time we speak it is because either we are sharing an instruction or simply influencing and sharing an opinion. Jane Goodall says ‘Change happens by listening and then starting a dialogue with the people who are doing something you don’t believe is right’.

Why Listening

Giving yourself the opportunity to hear what the other person or group of people is saying allows you to first of all get their perspective and also permits you to go a further mile to rearrange your message and customize your communication style.
There is a big difference between listening and waiting for your turn to speak so again I say in order to communicate effectively you need to understand the position of you audience. Listening not only gives you insight to other viewpoints, but also may reveal the one thing needed to complete your specific goals.

About the Author: Birungi Faith

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