"Yet a time is coming
and has now come when the true worshipers will worship
the Father in spirit and truth, for they are the
kind of worshipers the Father seeks." - John 4:23

My Heavenly Daddy is healing
me from the inside out.

Transparency is Real.
Many times painful.

Daddy let me be secure in You only!

Monday, June 28, 2010

ARE YOU A GOOD LISTENER?


Listening takes skill. I mean to really listen to someone.

I was one that never talked over anyone while they were speaking, but was I listening?

Many times I was thinking ahead for an answer in order to if they would ask my opinion I would not come off sounding stupid or ridiculous. I felt I HAD to have an answer. I HAD to fix their problem.

BUT...... when I went ahead and tried to figure out an answer in my mind to their question while they were telling me their heart wrenching story, I found myself not paying full attention to what was being said. Thus, my reply was at times off the wall and I missed the mark. So it did not matter in the least.

I felt my father did not listen to me. Also my mother. But my dad in particular was not a good listener. He had not the patience. Many times no eye contact. Probably why I rush through my conversations at time. I feel on my end people get tired of what I have to say or am saying. So I make it quick. Trying to improve on my self worth in this area, that I do in fact have something to say and is worth listening to.

I was ridiculed in school and laughed at because I was considered the dumb one. So, I really felt I did not have an opinion.

Yes, I have so improved in this area over the years. When someone begins to talk, I shut up. I do not talk over them ready with a reply or talk over them to give "what happened to me also" story and not let them finish. I wait now. Sometimes I am anxious to give a reply. But, try and wait. I concentrate now in exactly what they are saying, feeling and displaying in their actions.

I do not look ahead to see how "I appear." I do not look ahead to see if, "my answer will be correct." Although I have to fight the fear of coming off not paying attention or missing the mark still. It is hard for me. And if I am incorrect with a reply, I continue to learn that it is okay and not take what I think is failure to help someone is in fact okay. Not to beat myself up about it.

It is like with anything new. When we learn over and over again and do over and over again, the process will become easier to attain. To God Be The Glory.

The devotional below shares on listening. Can you relate?:


Listen carefully to my words, let this be the consolation you give me. Job 21:1

Listening should be easy. But it is not. At a minimum, listening means that we have to be quiet. We cannot listen when we are talking. Not talking is the hard part. There are many reasons for this. We prefer talking over listening because it gives us a sense of control. We can control the silences between words by choosing when to talk. Since silences of even a few seconds can cause our anxiety to increase, we fill the silence with words even when we really have nothing to say.

It is a remarkable experience to have someone really listen -- to have someone's undivided attention and interest. When someone listens, they communicate to us on a very deep level that we are valuable. Their listening breaks our isolation and aloneness. And it decreases the fears which come when our thoughts and feelings are confused. Talking out loud in the presence of a person who listens carefully allows us to gain clarity and perspective. Gradually, being listened to can begin to convince us that we are worth someone's attention and worth being loved.

When someone listens with respect and acceptance we are comforted and consoled. Our pain is soothed. Our burden is lightened.

Thank you, Lord, for those who listen to me.
And thank you for the people who
trust me enough to allow me to listen to them.
Give me the courage to talk honestly.
Give me the grace to listen well.
Amen.


Copyright Dale and Juanita Ryan

.................................................................................................................................................... I Got The Joy!

15 comments:

  1. I don't know if I'm a good listener. Probably not. Like you said ... thinking ahead -- eager to respond. Hmmmm.

    I will take notice next time I'm in a conversation.

    Blessings!
    Beth

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  2. Good point JBR. I think I'm a pretty good listener. My spouse thinks so. The devotional brings out some good answers. God Bless.

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  3. JBR, I have never met you "in real life," but from what I can tell from my blog you certainly listen well there. It's so important to have someone who can really listen, and I'm glad you're there to listen to me. And I really enjoy listening to you.

    Wishing you well,
    NOS

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  4. Very good advice...thanks so much

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  5. I try my best to be a good listener.

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  6. JBR,

    What a great post and one that requires a daily lesson in every opportunity we have to practice the art of listening. I still require some learning in this daily.

    Love and Hugs ~ Kat

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  7. wow jbr, what a terrific post! thank you. this is something i've been thinking a lot about lately. i might have to even just write a post about it otherwise i'll write you a gigantic comment and take up your whole page...

    is it ok if i link to your blog for this topic?

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  8. Thank you all for your wonderful comments.

    Katie, should you may link. Thank you.

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  9. Listening is truly an art. I keep work to get better at it.

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  10. thank you, jbr :) i linked to your blog in my post today

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  11. i hear you...if you want to know if you are a good listener..ask someone. scary thought huh. for me it ties with pride...wanting to look good by thinking of the next thing to say...to make me look smart...and you end up looking all the worse because you missed the point. i can be a fixer too, so once i have you figured out and know how to fix your problem the rest is fluff. i know i am working on it. smiles.

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  12. I was the middle child and felt invisible in my family. I didn't think I had opinions. Then I met Jesus. I've grown in this and have a long way to go. Now my kids visit the relatives when they travel back to the midwest and are amazed at how they all talk over each other. It is really loving when you listen to someone with your heart.

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  13. I enjoyed your post. I am always told by people that they are comfortable talking to me because I listen. I enjoy listening to people to see the differences in people. To get their perspective on things.
    But God really has to help me on those days when I am going through something. I think I developed an ear for listening when I used to feel that no one wanted to hear what I had to say or I wouldn't talk for fear I would say soemthing stupid. But God is good and He throughout the years changed so many insecurities in my life. Even if I still don't talk much, it's only because I am listening!

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  14. JBR I am a lousy listener yet I learn to listen to myself; hope that helps in other conversations too;

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  15. JBR, your post describes me well. When I was younger, I was afraid to have an opinion about anything because if my opinion was different than yours, you might not like me. Today that is not true but it took me years to get here. I like where I am today most of the time. For the past year, I have practiced just listening when someone else talks rather than thinking about what I am going to say when the other person stops talking. It makes me a better listener.

    Thanks for checking on me at my blog and for your hugs. You are a caring friend.

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