5 Things Smart People Do!

Have you ever wondered what smart people have in common? They understand the importance of listening and have mastered this skill. According to Kevin Daum, author of, “5 Things That Really Smart People Do”, this is what he suggests.

1. Quiet Your Inner Voice
“You know the one I am talking about. It’s the little voice that offers a running commentary when you are listening to someone. It’s the voice that brings up your own opinion about the information being provided. It is too easy to pay more attention to the inner voice than the actual speaker. Focus less on what your brain has to say and more on the speaker. You may be surprised at what you hear.”

2. Argue With Yourself
“If you can’t quiet the inner voice, then at least use it to your advantage. Every time you hear yourself contradicting the speaker, stop and take the other point of view. Suggest to your brain all the reasons why the speaker may be correct and you may be wrong. In the best case you may open yourself to the information being provided. Failing that, you will at least strengthen your own argument.”

3. Act Like You Are Curious
“Some people are naturally curious and others are not. No matter which category you are in you can benefit from behaving like a curious person. Next time you are listening to information, make up and write down three to five relevant questions. If you are in a lecture, Google them after for answers. If you are in a conversation you can ask the other person. Either way you’ll likely learn more, and the action of thinking up questions will help encode the concepts in your brain.”

4. Find the Kernel of Truth
“No concept or theory comes out of thin air. Somewhere in the elaborate concept that sounds like complete malarkey there is some aspect that is based upon fact. Even if you don’t buy into the idea, you should at least identify the little bit of truth from whence it came. Play like a detective and build your own extrapolation. You’ll enhance your skills of deduction and may even improve the concept beyond the speaker’s original idea.”

5. Focus on the Message not the Messenger
“Often people shut out learning due to the person delivering the material. Whether it’s a boring lecturer, someone physically unappealing, or a member of the opposite political party, the communicator can impact your learning. Even friends can disrupt the learning process since there may be too much history and familiarity to see them as an authority on a topic. Separate the material from the provider. Pretend you don’t know the person or their beliefs so you can hear the information objectively. As for the boring person, focus on tip two, three, or four as if it were a game, thereby creating your own entertainment.”

And finally,”Seek first to understand, then to be understood.”- Stephen R. Covey

-Champion Parenting/Building Leaders for Life

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About authoraliceiorio

A nationally known educator, with over 20 years of teaching experience (preschool- college) is President and founder of Champion Parenting, Inc., a nonprofit.
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