Kindness & Listening Skills

Today, we’re covering some key ways to up your listening skills in your family as a way to show kindness to others as well as yourself, by increasing your ability and frequency to have amiable conversations.Everyone should be quick to hear, slow to speak, and slow to anger. James 1:19

 

“Most people do not listen with the intent to understand; they listen with the intent to respond.” -Stephen Covey, 7 Habits of Highly Effective People

 

“You are short on ears and long on mouth.” -John Wayne

 

Are you a good listener or are you a little long on mouth?

Today, we’re covering some key ways to up your listening skills in your family as a way to show kindness to others as well as yourself, by increasing your ability and frequency to have amiable conversations.

 

But what’s the purpose of listening anyway?

To learn what we do not know.

Understand the other person’s perspective.

 

What it isn’t:

An opportunity to check off all the things we know already.
Decide that we know why they did what they did and dig for evidence to support that assumption.

 

Three listening skills we’ll cover today include

  1. Create a safe space.
  2. Stay Curious
  3. Practice a listening lesson. (Surprise, you have homework!)

 

 

First, create a safe space. This is not a time to attack or defend. Stay curious and caring. Notice where your mind starts racing, creating judgment, or focusing on what you think you know already.  Finally, remind yourself and the person you are talking to that you are on the same team by sitting next to each other to discuss something rather than across from each other.  Just this physical change can go a long way to feeling more like comrades and less like enemies.

 

Second, stay curious- look for what’s underneath. Some phrases and questions you can use to explore what’s really going on for the other person include:

“Tell me more about that.”

“Why do you think that is?”

“How does that make you feel?”

“What are you really wanting more than anything?

Third, try this listening lesson.  When someone tells you what is wrong, attempt to repeat it word for word back to them and then ask if you heard correctly.  This not only forces you to listen all the way to the end, but it also allows the other person to clarify any misunderstandings immediately.

 

And don’t be afraid to practice this one.  Try it on something that isn’t super important first.  Have another person tell you a story and you periodically try to repeat exactly what they say.  Once you’ve taken turns doing that a couple of times, then try it during a more serious discussion.

 

Finally, when you think the conversation is over, ask,

“Is there anything else you want me to know about this right now?”

This allows the other person a chance to declare that they also think the conversation is over- or not, which helps you both end it well.

 

If you’d like more tools like this, we have over 40 other training’s presented in our Fruit Pursuit Mastermind Membership.  That membership is currently open for enrollment.  If you, however, listen to this and enrollment is not open, we are happy to add you to a waiting list where you can be notified of future times when it is open.

To get more information about how you can join our membership, send an email to mary@maryaldrichcoaching.com

 

PS- October is all about Faithfulness.  I look forward to sharing a new month of topics around faith, consistency, and fighting discouragement with you!  See you then!

Visit Mary at maryaldrichcoaching.com or find more episodes here.

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