These are my best tips for having a productive conversation:
Validate. You know you are eager to know ‘why’ they said what they said or acted as they did. Validate their feelings by telling them you want to understand where they are coming from and their unique point of view, but never attack.
Eye Contact. The importance of eye contact is critical. You are telling the person you care, and you are looking into their eyes as they share their feelings. Listening to a person’s every word and acknowledging their expressions actually empowers you.