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Validate your own emotions

Defensiveness sabotages your ability to be a good listener. People become defensive when they feel threatened in a relationship.

The best way to avoid defensiveness and continue to listen well, even when you're upset, is to practice validating your own emotions. Say to yourself that it is okay that you feel angry or hurt. But, you get to decide how to act moving forward.

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MORE IDEAS FROM THE SAME ARTICLE

The idea of being a good listener is almost a cliche. Yet, most of us are terrible at it.

Our ability to solve problems is helpful in life, but it is the wrong thing to do in situations when people simply want to be heard, understood, and feel connected.

Paraphrase what the person has said back to you.

Being a good listener is not about getting the facts about what made them upset. It is to be supportive, offer encouragement, and empathize.
Ask open-ended questions to communicate that you're interested in them. Avoid questions beginning with 'Why' and use 'What' or 'How' instead....

When we acknowledge and validate how someone feels, we send them the message that we understand them on a deeper level.

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