by Diego Nascimento

Have you had the opportunity to talk with a person who, rather than face you while talking continues doing another activity on the phone or on the computer? It’s uncomfortable, isn’t it? That is what I would like to address today.
I was talking with a friend and heard the famous phrase: Go ahead and talk, I’m listening…” She was on the phone and interacting with others through social networking. I confess that I preferred not to and decided to wait for another opportunity to speak with her.

Situations like this are repeated every day at home, at the office, the club, the park … there’s no way to get away from it. In some casesthe obstacle isn’t a cell phone, but a tablet, a TV show or even an interesting magazine.

I’m a big fan of technology, and I try to keep up with new releases and market trends. However, I realize that many people who admire the latest cell phones or super laptops still miss eye-to-eye conversations. Through eye contact the speaker observes the reactions andfeelings and offers a safe place for these talks.

I will let you in on a secret:  I’ve made this mistake a few times.  In my eagerness to complete an e-mail or analyze a text, I kept my eyes fixed on the computer while the other person was talking. I confess that I had to redouble my efforts to try to “remember what was said,” and in the end, I realized that one of my tasks had not met the expectations.  For these and other reasons, I decided to change this about myself and maintain complete focus on the conversation at hand.

Our brain is a great computer; I have no doubt of that. But in interpersonal relationships we need to have those famous “feelings.”  I suggest you do not do two things at the same time:  if you talk to your client or your coworker, concentrate your efforts so that the communication occurs fully (without dividing your attention).  I’m sure the person on the other side, the one that is talking to you, will feelmore respected when he has your full attention. Remember, this tip is for face-to-face conversations! The same should occur in digital communications or correspondence, but we’ll talk more about that subject at another time.

What about this new generation who spends all their days with their eyes fixed on a cell phone or table staring at things on a screen? We will need to think of a strategy so that the art of dialogue does not become extinct. How about starting by being a good example?

Want to share your experiences? Feel free. I’m ready to listen!

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