Listen first, talk last and you'll learn more than you know!
I have been practice listening actively. I am an extrovert so I always have an opinion!
I have come to realize that I always heard with the intent to reply and not to intent of listening, although I use eye contact (that comes natural to be because my mom is deaf), I many times found/find myself interupting someone.
While practicing active listening, I have come to find that if I just wait and really listen to what other people have to say, I learn more; the questions I had are answered naturally during the conversation and many times my ideas were already thought about or, in the end, I find they wouldn't work or make sense. Saves a lot of energy to listen instead of just hearing with a response ready to come out.
I'm not where I want to be yet, but am working to get there.
Thank you for reinforcing the need to really listen! If we all would practice active listening, many misunderstandings would be avoid as well as frustration. People would work better together, relationships would become stronger, because if you listen, you learn and when you learn, you understand even if you don't agree.
As my grandmother used to say: you have two ears to listen more than you talk! How right she was!