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The Top 10 Distinctions Between Winners and Whiners by Keith Cameron Smith

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Chapter 5. Winners listen twice as much as they talk. Whiners talk twice as much as they listen.

You may be surprised to discover that the greatest communication skill you can master has nothing to do with talking. The greatest communication skill you can master is listening.

By learning to be a committed listener you can develop deeper and more meaningful relationships. When you focus your attention on listening to understand rather than listening to respond, you learn more, connect better, and the conversation reaches a deeper level.

The tendency in our society is to interrupt people while they are talking. Someone says something that triggers a thought in our minds, and we feel a need to blurt that thought out. As soon as we think we know what they are saying, we interrupt to share our opinions or beliefs about the topic. Sadly, though, when we interrupt people like this, we usually miss what they are really trying to say.

Winners learn to listen and they continually work to master the skill. Whiners can't keep their mouths shut. They ramble on and on, oblivious to how many times they interrupt others. Pay attention during your next conversation. How often do you feel a need to cut short the speech of others? Do you interrupt people more than you sincerely listen to them?

If you reflect for a moment, you will find that when you speak with someone that you really admire—someone you truly respect—you tend to listen more than you talk. The lesson here is not that you shouldn't interrupt ...

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