I used to think I was a good listener until I started practicing mindfulness.
I noticed how often I would be formulating what I was going to say when the other person stopped talking. I became aware of my own impatience, judgments, and desire to come up with the perfect response.
Mindfulness will help you notice when you’re trying to solve someone else’s problem rather than simply listen. You can notice what you’re intention is. Perhaps it’s genuinely to be helpful or maybe it’s to be controlling.
See if you can let go and trust that the other person has what they need to be successful. Notice when your mind starts to shift into problem solving mode.
Take a breath and come back to hearing the words the other person is saying. You can nod your head, smile, or say something that let’s them know you’re listening.