Chapter5-5 : How do we become someone who can “sense the mood”? The secret is similar to the rule ab
Sometimes people get annoyed about someone and say, “He’s the type who can’t sense the mood.”
When he starts to talk, everybody freezes up. After he’s finished talking, everyone is silent for a while.
No one talks. He’s seldom invited to group dinners or parties . . .
People like this are unable to sense the mood of a gathering and ruin the atmosphere without even realizing it.
There seem to be quite a few people who are unhappy because they can’t get along with others, or because they don’t know how to relax around other people.
Simply telling such people to “sense the mood” doesn’t help them much, since a mood or an atmosphere is intangible and not always readily apparent.
You can in fact become a person who can sense the mood of a place simply by lending an ear to the conversation of the people around you.
The reason is that people who are described as not being able to sense the mood generally fall into one of two categories:
1) Those who insist on talking only about themselves (not being willing to listen to what those around them might say).
2) Those who interrupt other people’s conversations (not listening to what those around them are actually saying).
People talk only about themselves or break into other people’s conversations because they do not wish to listen to what those around them are saying.
But what can be done to remedy these faults?
Let’s suppose that you’ve gone to a karaoke bar with a friend.
If you hog the microphone because you feel like singing more yourself, your friend won’t feel good about that.
Most likely he won’t invite you to go to a karaoke bar with him again, no matter how well you may be able to sing.
The reason is that your friend has come to the karaoke place not primarily to listen to you sing but to release his own stress by singing himself.
When you’ve sung one song, you pass the mike to the next person.
You listen to your friend singing and encourage him by clapping your hands or beating a tambourine.
That way, everyone can enjoy the karaoke.
In the same way, if you want your friend to listen to your story, you need to shift the topic to him and listen to his stories from time to time.
Then when you sense that it seems to be your turn again, you may resume talking.
By doing so, you can avoid monopolizing the conversation and annoying others by ruining the atmosphere.
If you sense that you’ve been talking longer than the other person, it’s better to pause and say, “Sorry, I’ve been going on too much about myself.”
The other person will realize that you are showing consideration for him or her, and respect you all the more for it.
And if, even so, it happens that you have monopolized the conversation, you had better express your gratitude by saying something like “Thank you for listening to what I had to say today.
You’ve made me feel a lot better!”
A friend or lover who is thanked in this way will not have negative feelings about your conversation.
On the contrary, he or she will feel happy about having done something good for you.
A mood or atmosphere may not be readily sensed, but it’s always possible to listen carefully to what those around us are saying.
Just by lending an ear to the conversation of others, you can be a “mood-maker” who makes everyone feel much better about themselves.