One of the best nuggets of learning regarding communication I’ve ever run across is the HEART acronym, an excellent way to remember how to listen with the inner ear:

H – Hear and understand me.
When people feel they have been listened to with respect, when they feel understood, they are much more ready to listen in response.

E – Even if you disagree, please don’t make me wrong.
People resent having their self-worth questioned, they view it as an attack and get defensive. There are many, many sides to the same mountain – remain humble. Only a person with low EQ, will deliberately make another person wrong. What’s the point? Few things are totally black and white. Even if you disagree, there may be some valid points in their point of view and they may not be the only person who feels that way or sees the world the way they do. Your Customer’s perception becomes your Reality! Plus, you catch more flies with honey than with vinegar. 

A – Acknowledge the greatness within me.
Everyone has potential to grow, evolve and change. People respond positively when you see their potential. 

R – Remember to look for my loving intentions.
In “How to Win Friends and Influence People”, Dale Carnegie said people are complex and have multiple motives so “Always appeal to the nobler motive”.

T – Tell me the truth with compassion.
Treat people with respect, do unto others as you would have them do unto you. Even when administering “tough love”, empathize and remember, “But for the Grace of God go I”.

– From “Managing From the Heart” with edits and additions by Nathan S. Collier

Closing Quotes

“The biggest problem with communication is the illusion it just occurred.”

“You can not not communicate.” – NLP truism 

“ The way we communicate with others and with ourselves ultimately determines the quality of our lives.” Anthony Robbins