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Understanding Clears the Air

“Understanding Clears the Air”

Connect with nearly anyone more effectively and avoid unproductive heated discussions.

When discussion sizzles and tempers flare, float this rule: "No one can make their point until they restate the last person’s point to his or her satisfaction," suggests author and consultant Stephen R. Covey.

This technique works because it requires in-depth listening, leading to true understanding and learning.

Covey’s key point: To interact with and influence people, you must first understand them.

"Empathetic listening gets inside [others’] frame of reference. You see the world the way they see the world. You understand the way they feel," Covey says.

Source: "7 Habits of Highly Effective People," by Steven R. Covey, Fireside, a division of Simon & Schuster.