Listening?

 “Prayer is when we talk to God.

   

Meditation is when we listen to God.

Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak.
James 1:19

If we all would listen to God and obey Him...

madness, foolishness, cruelty, anger, lust, and greed

would cease to exist.

 

Influential voices may challenge your belief in God -

STAND FIRM IN YOUR FAITH

in GOD.

"Let your heart guide you.

It whispers softly,

so listen closely." 

"No one is as deaf as the person

who will not listen."

 

 

 

Listening is an under valued art. 

talking.gif - (0K) Constantly talking 

isn’t necessarily communicating.

To put more effort into listening

and less into telling is very rewarding.

Listen:

* Pay attention to sound

* Hear with thoughtful attention

* Be considerate

Have you been in a conversation with someone

and you are not really listening completely

to what they have to say because you are too busy

formulating your response?

This is actually quite common

and yet we think we are good communicators. 

http://www.boodrow.com/mainwebsite/images/listening.gif Listening is essential to fulfilling

relationships.


To listen, not in order to give an answer,

allows us to walk through the experience of  another's life.

 

  The importance of listening in

communication is enormous.

We should feel deeply honored when someone invites us

in to be a part of understanding the experiences they've

lived or are living. It is a great gift of trust that we should

never take for granted.

 

Do you ever find yourself mindlessly saying

“uh huh”

when someone is trying to tell you something

only to have them say...

“I’m sorry what did you say?" 

 

mouth.gif mini talking mouth image by smashleee

Talk less...

Listen more.

"No one is as deaf as the person

who will not listen."

 

  The most important thing in communication

is to hear what isn’t being said.

  Focus on the speaker.

 In order to communicate effectively we have to be able to hear

what the other person is saying. 

 

Notice body language, tone of voice, and rate of speaking.

 

Then look beneath the words

 

to see what feelings and needs are being communicated.

 

You never know what you might find.

 

We should sincerely work to understand one's message;

and ask relevant, open-ended questions to clarify

and learn more, i.e.,

(“What do you mean by that?” or

“When did that happen?…”)

this may help us stay involved.

We should avoid steering others off topic

with questions or comments

that aren’t related to the conversation. 

 

The importance of listening in communication

is often well illustrated when we analyze

our listening skills with those closest to us. 

In particular our spouse, siblings,

children or friends.

“We have two ears and one mouth

so that we can listen twice as much as we speak.”

 Finishing sentences for others and interrupting

sends a message that what you have to say

is more important and can diminish the speaker’s

sense of control and importance.

If you need to move the conversation along, do so politely, as in,

“Excuse me, I'm so sorry for interrupting, but ….”

Likewise, be careful not to jump to conclusions

or assume you know what hasn't yet been said.

 

 

Allowing the person to completely finish their thought

before you begin to form a response

is crucial to good listening.

Not interrupting gives the speaker a sense of importance

and a potential self-esteem boost.

May we pay attention to the everyday conversations

we have with those people with whom

we think we communicate well.

May we allow the speaker to fully explain

their position, problem, etc.,

before jumping in with a reply.

 

 

Trying to persuade others without fully listening

to their point of view can, sometimes,

 short circuit our blessings.

Who knows...

we could end up learning something

that could change our viewpoint or life.  

 

May we be more receptive to the speaker’s needs –

they may just need us to listen,

and not try to fix the problem.

Sometimes being listened to is enough. 

May we listen with the genuine intent to understand what the speaker is communicating.

 "It is better to listen in order to understand

than to listen in order to reply."

Research shows that we speak at a rate of about 125 words

per minute, yet we have the capacity to listen to

approximately 400 words per minute. So what are we doing

with that extra space in our minds when someone else is

talking?


Are we really listening?

Listen More.

A good listener gets to know something. 

Effective listening develops empathy,
 
which is the capacity for a deep understanding
 
of another's experience.
Listening takes work
and when it comes to improving our communication
there is no getting around that.
Genuinely want to listen…
authentic sincerity creates an atmosphere of trust.  
 If we want our communication skills to get stronger
it is important that we not day dream in a conversation,
but instead concentrate fully
on what the other person is saying.
  

  Focus is important even when dealing  
 with younger children and teenagers.
 Acknowledging key points with a gentle nod,
 to show we understand encourages them to continue.
 We should even wait a moment before we begin to reply.
This gives the other person a chance to add
anything else they may have thought of.
 
By waiting an additional moment before we reply
we also let the other person know
they have been heard completely.
If we practice this for a time people will relax
when conversing with us because they will know
that they don’t have to rush to get their two cents in.
They will appreciate the fact that they can communicate
with us and be heard.

 
Perception is reality –

if people get the sense that they’re not being heard,

then they’re not being heard. 

 It is important that we hear what the other person

is saying by actively listening. 

 Listening greatly enhances our understanding

and our overall abilities in life.

The friends who listen to us are the ones we move toward.

 When we are listened to, it helps us unfold and expand.

 

Listening can generally open doors

that might otherwise...

be closed to us.

Look at the person speaking.

The person you are communicating with

will certainly feel respected...

given the care you are taking with the conversation.

 

  Tips for being a good listener:
Maintain eye contact. Keep your eyes on the speaker.
 
Uncross your arms.

Think about what is being said.

Make pictures in your mind.

Ask questions that take the conversation deeper.

As much as you may be tempted,

don't speak over someone who is talking.

When you feel the urge to step in, take a breath,

let your agenda go, and continue to listen.

Paying attention is the cardinal rule for good listening.

Listening is a magnetic and strange thing,

a creative force.


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