It is so easy to get so wrapped up in a conversation that you are talking instead of listening. My mother would always encourage us to listen. ” You will learn more from listening. Give the person time to speak.”
It is not always about what you know and impressing others. Sometimes people share things with you because they just need someone to listen to them. As long as our mental faculties are intact, we are capable of making our own decisions. Just listening to someone shows that you care and value what they have to say. See the bigger picture and not just the one incident. If you are nonjudgemental and an active listener (eye contact/face person, no other activities, paraphrase when asked, don’t interrupt, advise when asked, relaxed, etc. ), people will feel comfortable sharing more information with you. Remember that sometimes people hold back information until they feel safe.