Most people love small talk. They love to talk about picture frames, and they love to talk about the weather, but they don’t love having conversations that matter. (If these things really matter to a person, then of course, I want to talk about them, but typically these topics are a search to talk about something, anything, really.) In fact, most people steer clear from meaningful conversations, but for change to happen, these have to take place. The mentality of “if we don’t look at the problem, then it’s not there” doesn’t create change; it just doesn’t. Look, I know it’s uncomfortable, but for things to change we have to talk about things that matter.
We are all unique and that is a beautiful thing. Some are more introverted, who like to keep to themselves in most instances, and lose energy from being around other people. Then there are extroverts, who are energized by being around other people and talking to them. Extroverts, of course, are more outspoken, and can tend to rule most conversations. For those of you who don’t quite fit into either of these two classic categories, then there are ambiverts — people who exhibit qualities of both introversion and extroversion.
Some people will give introverts a hard time, because they don’t say enough. And some will give extroverts a hard time, because they say too much. Yes, depending on which category you fall into has a lot to do with how you handle yourself in conversation, but it has nothing to do with common sense and courtesy. And no matter which category you fall into, when people come to talk to you about something, it doesn’t mean they always want or need your opinion. Too often, people forget the power found in listening.
With becoming better communicators, it is important to not only focus on what we say, and how we say it, but we all need to become better listeners, too. Here are three ways to know if you are better at listening first or giving your opinion too soon: