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Step 1 – Clear your mind

Before having a conversation, think about the other person.  Ask yourself, “How can I connect fully with what this person is about to say.”   Keep your mind open, free from preconceived ideas or assumptions of what they might say.

Step 2 – Listen

Listen to the words they are using, their tone of voice and body language.  Concentrate on the messages they are conveying.   Skilful listening is critical in understanding what messages are being communicated.

Step 3 – Demonstrate that you understand

It is important to communicate that you understand what they have said and the messages they are portraying through their body language and tone of voice by repeating back some of their exact words.  Say something like, “That’s a really good point you made about….”

Step 4 – Find similarities

Bring into the conversation areas where you both see “eye to eye”, common themes, subjects or observations.

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