Good listening is much more than non-lexical sounds and nodding. In order to be an active listener, there are several new behaviors that compliment better listening more aptly than the previous standard.
Remaining silent is not all that important anymore. Formulate Questions, and ask yourself how this can be relevant to you. Especially in a 1-on-1 setting, contributing to the conversation will stimulate your level of understanding of the topic. Don’t be a rock! Especially in an open setting, it will be beneficial to you (and your speaker) to participate and ask some questions. Being able to repeat and offer up new information on a subject, creating a give and take conversation will boost your retention levels.
If you are not comfortable asking questions during a conversation or lecture, don’t. Ask yourself how you can use the information to your advantage and jot ideas down. Paying close attention and putting yourself into the scenario is a helpful tool to. Stay on topic and try not to get stuck in fantasy land.
Everyone learns in different way and listening is arguably the biggest factor in that. It’s easy to be distracted by your electronic device buzzing to alert us about a new Tweet or SnapChat. Stop! Put down the mobile device and engage with your audience. Hopefully involving yourself into a discussion rather than your phone will promote your chance to retain and use information.