Michele Wilson, Ph.D., educating patients in her
improving your listening to others:
Face the speaker,
watch their face and gestures.
- Get close enough to hear.
Ask the speaker to speak
up when needed.
Focus your attention.
Avoid distractions and other activities.
Be an active
listener. Respond with nods, gestures, and feedback.
Pick up cues when the speaker is done, so you
noise when possible. Close open doors or windows, turn off radio or
- Come with a willing attitude to listen and
Suggestions for improving
speaking so others will listen to you:
- Be friendly and positive. Smiling activates
your face muscles.
Choose topics of
conversation that are of interest to the other person.
- Avoid topics that will upset and turn off the
- Get close.
Not more than 4 feet
when sitting, 6-8
feet when standing. Don't speak from another room.
preamble and gestures to
get their attention.
Sit up straight
or stand up to project your voice.
Emphasize lip and
tongue movements for clarity.
- Speak louder.
Speak more slowly.
Use and emphasize key words. Make these higher in pitch.
Give cues when
you are done speaking. At the end of your statements, let pitch drop, not volume.
- Stay on topic or
indicate a topic change. Don't be tangential.
promote good hearing and listening
Choose quiet environments with minimal
- Avoid noise centers
like crowded bars or serving doorways.
Avoid dining hall hours where noise levels are highest.
If possible, choose rooms with good acoustics.
Plush, curtained rooms
are better than hard surfaced rooms.
Have adequate lighting
that shines on the speaker's face.
- At a dining table, only have one