Listen. With your ears, eyes, heart, soul, nose, toes, prose. Really really listen. Be still. Focus. Breathe in your partner, want to know. Want to be on top of the empathy, loving embrace of “I hear you.”. Lean forward, rapt in the knowledge of the imparting of stories. You’d guffaw at how much people just want to be heard! Your time to talk will come about. Always does. For now … zip the lip and open the earbuds, listen as if life depended on the words of your compadre.
Caring compassion means attention. Practice such and listening will come natural. You should be a little spent after active listening. No barriers. No formal training here except years of listening for a living. People truly just want to be heard.