People often say I am a good listener. I have become used to this compliment. On closer introspection, I feel being a good listener has its own advantages.

I can make friends easily by understanding the various facets of ones personality. People like to pour their hearts out to me. By listening to them patiently with a caring approach, I make them more assured. They come up with their own contradictions. There is greater level of intimacy resulting in better understanding of each other. I also get an opportunity to express myself without inhibitions. I feel I am able to nurture relationships by being a good listener. When a relationship is nurtured, it strengthens human bonds. It provides a clue to handle personalities with different traits. It makes me more confident of myself.

It is difficult to find good listeners these days. Everyone seems to be in a hurry to make his point and talk about himself. May be this is an age when one has to advertise himself in a strong way. You have to be vocal to be heard. Recently, I met a person in a party whose great intellectual skills attracted me instantly. After close interaction, I felt he was talking endlessly. He did not all allow me to talk about myself. Being a good listener, I still managed to gain fresh insights from his vast knowledge.

But I felt by not letting me talk, he missed a wonderful opportunity to know me. In the process he could not enrich himself through sharing each others knowledge and understanding. There was another man in the party who despite his name and fame provided me an opportunity to talk about myself. After listening to him for some period of time, he genuinely felt that I should talk about myself. A strong chemistry developed between two of us. We felt we had so many things to share.

Good listening is an art which can be developed by constant practice. It need a lot of patience. Encouraging others to speak while remaining silent is indeed difficult. However, if this habit is developed, one can definitely enter into different relationships which can be a good learning experience. One can then have a fair idea of which relationships give utmost mental satisfaction. Judging the wavelengths of these relationships, one can devise effective strategies to cope and handle these relationships.

One can attain peace of mind and find true happiness. Good listening does not mean that you should be a poor listener. You can utilize the advantages of good listening by being assertive according to the demands of situation. You should never miss the opportunity to come up with your own argument. In this way you can win the respect of others. When you are not a good listener, you generally become aggressive and always ready to take the cudgels. This attitude generally does not pay off as you create more enemies than friends.

I want to remain a good listener. I do not want to change myself. For if I do, I will loose peace of mind by being self-obsessed. I feel I will lose the respect of others. I will miss an opportunity to gain from others experiences. In short, I will become a person trapped in my own thoughts.