How to be understanding with others, in 8 steps
The ability to be understanding is one of the psychological faculties that has made us capable of living in society. And for the same reason that each person has his personality, it is necessary to put some effort to adapt to the points of view of the rest to get to connect with them.
In this article we will see several key ideas about how to be understanding or understanding , and how they can be applied in our day to day.
- Related article: "The 28 types of communication and their characteristics"
How to be understanding: 8 tips
From the moment in which human beings live in society, it is necessary that each individual adapts to the needs and characteristics of those people with whom they live. This process always involves a certain level of sacrifice, but we can ensure that this effort is not in vain and serves to relate better to the other not only in theory, but also in practice.
1. Think about the priorities of the other
To be more understanding, it is necessary take into account the scale of values and needs that move the person we are talking to. Regardless of whether we agree with that way of establishing priorities, it is necessary to understand their point of view in order to be able to carry out the first steps of dialogue and consensus.
- Maybe you're interested: "The 10 types of values: principles that govern our lives"
2. Be patient
If everyone thought like us, communication would be incredibly fluid and fast ... but also boring and uninspiring. Therefore, being understanding implies having the necessary patience to leave room for approaching positions, mutual understanding , which by definition can not occur in a matter of fractions of a second, but involves a whole process.
3. Practice active listening
The moment of listening is very important, and not only because it allows us to start thinking as our interlocutors, but also because it is a way of fostering dialogue and collaboration. Therefore, we must empower it by involving ourselves in active listening, which has to do with all verbal and nonverbal elements that indicate that we are listening . Make brief comments, look into the eyes, nod ... small details that make the difference.
4. Do not ridicule
Some people take advantage of any situation in which there is a disagreement with their interlocutor to try to ridicule it. This can be an apparent relief for whoever does it (at the expense of the other), but it does not serve for anything more than that, and instead has many negative effects. Among them, the fact of making mutual understanding much more difficult.
5. Shows interest in their emotions
Many times, we do not really understand the other until we know their feelings and, in general, that irrational part of him that leads him to act . But this is something that not everyone is willing to share with the rest at the first change. Therefore, we must show that his point of view is respected and that we can speak freely without fear of being judged.
6. Give opportunities to redeem
Sometimes, what keeps us apart from another person is the fact that she feels guilty and, therefore, believes that it can only continue through confrontation , since in the past he has done things that would be considered clearly bad if that confrontation did not exist.
Thus, it is important to give opportunities to be redeemed in a subtle way, without it being noticed that it is a kind of "ritual".
For example, to assume in part that something has been done that has harmed the other, even if that is not true, so that that person feels good making the apparent sacrifice of forgiving us. That way you may feel that your sins have been expiated . But you have to achieve a balance so that you do not feel a precedent in which any grievance can be resolved in an excessively easy way.
7. Think about the consequences of what you do
Each time you do something that affects another person, think beyond what that change means to you. You have to put yourself in the skin of the other and see, for example, if that makes your situation worse , something that is possible if until that moment we had not stopped to consider what it means to participate actively or passively in what we have modified.
8. Consider the influence of context
Naturally, human beings tend to believe that a person is what they choose to be, without more. The phenomenon described by the theory of the just world, for example, is a sample of it. However, this is false, since the environment influences us a lot.
Therefore, to be more understanding we must bear in mind that the individual is the product of his decisions but also of the circumstances in which he has to live.
- Coller, N. (2018). A turtle, a hare and a mosquito. Valencia: Nau Llibres.
- Goleman, D. (2006). Social Intelligence. New York: Bantam Books.
- Strauss, N. (2015). The Truth: An Uncomfortable Book About Relationships. New York: William Morrow.