How can we be effective conversationalists?
Communication with other people is a daily life routine. Effective communication is a fundamental aspect of society. Conversation is a mode of communication. Some of us are very good conversationalists and some are not. A question would have arisen in your minds “What is the criteria to be a affective conversationalist”? Either we should focus on speaking or listening? How can we be good conversationalists? Some people have the talent of good speaking. But does this talent make them good conversationalists? The answer is no. If we don’t want to listen other people then we are not good conversationalists.
Now the point is how can we be good listeners? Dale Carnegie mentioned a lot of techniques to become a good listener. Pay attention to what people are talking about. Sometimes the topic may be of your interest. So you might listen carefully. But if the topic is irrelevant and uninteresting then what should you do? In this chapter author gave examples of many people who had to listen rude, arrogant and disrespectful people. But they listened to them very attentively and in a humble way. And the results were quite amazing. Arrogant people became fond of their listener.
In this world people usually care about themselves. They want to be listened, well treated, and taken care of themselves. They want to talk about themselves. In such scenarios, listen them, about their life, their achievements, their hobbies, interests and all about themselves. You should pretend that you are quite interested in their life and personality. Pretend that you are impressed by their accomplishments. This behavior of your will satisfy their ego. And ultimately they will choose you as their audience.
In my academic life, I happened to study from a very proud teacher. No doubt he was best in his subjects and he was in fact a very talented person. But mostly he wanted to talk about himself. In such moments, I tried to listen to him attentively or at least I pretended. Sometimes when the other students were writing down his lecture, I just looked at him, made an eye contact with him and tried to listen attentively. I knew at that time my face was displaying “Yes I want to listen to you. “ And often he looked towards me and smiled. I felt that my attitude towards him satisfied him.
We should remember that in today’s world people are more interested in themselves and their problems than you or your problems. I want to quote these awesome lines from this chapter;
“A person’s toothache means more to that person than a famine in China which
Kills a million people. A boil on one’s neck interests one more than forty earthquakes in Africa.”
When you find interest in a person, then make him feel that you are genuinely interested in his/her speech. It will give him/her immense pleasure. According to my opinion, in this God forsaken world only attention to people while talking to them will strengthen your relationships more and more.