Coaching has helped make me a better conversationalist.
Here’s the secret and then I’ll give you one simple tip to bring your conversations to a meaningful level.
To have meaningful conversations, you have to be an ‘engaged’ listener.
I don’t like the phrase ‘active’ listening because it reminds me of a hyperactive kid on medication.
Engaged has a better, more intentional meaning.
There are many skills to ‘engaged’ listening but here’s a great one!
Ask the 2nd question.
Here’s what that means. Listen to what the person is saying, and don’t let that part of the conversation go by without asking a question about what they just said.
You are in a conversation with a friend and they are talking about their low motivation at work.
Our human tendency wants to respond like this:
- “I want to relate a story about my own life!”
- “I want to wait until their done talking to jump in with something!”
It may be therapeutic for you but sometimes it communicates that you weren’t really listening.
So again, your friend is struggling with low motivation. Instead of saying, “Me too,” you ask, “What do you mean?” or “What does that look like?”
This is great in relationships as well.
Your spouse says, “I’m really looking forward to getting away for the weekend” Again, instead of responding, “Me too,” you ask, “What do you think will be the best part about it?”
It helps them go deeper in their own thought process and also communicates that you actually care and are actually engaging in the conversation.
Isaac: “Thank you for coaching and following up. Life has been much better, and all it took was me being present. We have had several dates away from children since then, and the second question concept is magic – all of these have allowed her to open up in ways I haven’t seen in a long time.”
My challenge for you is to use the 2nd question just once within the next 24hours and see what happens.
I’d love to hear how it goes for you. Email me here to tell your story!