CARELIFE Listening LIFE & Your Personal Relationship Skills, Part 2 of 5
In this section of the CARE program you will be studying about LIFE and Listening. Each letter in the word LIFE has a special meaning which can help you begin understanding and helping people in their daily interactions, and in solving personal problems.
What does it mean to listen?
One definition states: To pay close attention, to hear and understand. Have you considered this…? We speak 200 – 250 words per minute and our brain processes information at 600 words per minute; because of this we are often ready to speak even before we have heard what was said.
What is needed to become an effective listener?
- Time: in order not to rush things along too quickly
- Patience: so that you can more easily consider the subject being discussed
- Concentration: in order to direct your full attention toward the speaker
- Energy: listening is an exercise… energy is required
- Interest: in the speaker, and in the subject being presented
- Understanding: to comprehend as fully as possible the speaker’s thoughts
Consider God’s example….. …He has not despised nor abhorred the affliction of the afflicted; neither hath He hid His face from him; but when he cried unto Him, He heard. Psalms 22:24
How people often listen to one another
- Superficially: on the surface, in a shallow way
- Preparing to answer before having heard what was being presented
- In a distracted way… Thinking about something other than what they’re hearing
Do you think having a weakness in good listening skills could hinder communication efforts?
Good listener characteristics
They avoid distractions, or thinking about unrelated matters while listening
They don’t immediately react to what is being presented
They don’t immediately react to the speaker’s personality
They avoid selective listening
They strive to keep an open and objective mind
They listen for expressions of emotion in the voice
Evaluate your own listening skills
Do people ever say to you:
|“You’re not listening to me..”|
|Do you have trouble avoiding distractions?|
|Do you frequently interrupt when someone is speaking?|
|Do you find yourself doing things, while listening, to save time?|
|Do you maintain eye contact with the person you speak with?|
|Do you use verbal and non-verbal clues to show your interest?|
|Do you look for the speaker’s deeper meanings or emotions?|
|Do you enjoy listening more than you like to talk?|
|Do you enjoy having people listen while you’re speaking?|
What do you think effective listening can accomplish?
What can result from speaking before you’ve heard fully what is being said?
Study the three examples listed below relating to Jesus’ listening and communication skills.
Discuss with a friend the immediate and long-term impact you think each experience made on the people He spoke with.
Jesus at the age of twelve speaking in the Temple at Jerusalem:
See Luke 2:46, 47.
Jesus with Nicodemus during a late night visit: See John 3:1-10.
Jesus, a woman of Samaria, and the people from her village:
See John 4:1-30, 39-42.
When we listen, paths are created for future communications.
The materials you have been studying up to this point can assist in getting the process of communication started, but there is more that needs to be implemented.
In part 3 of this 5 part series we will be discussing how identifying with people and their needs can help in problem solving.
Use the following link to go to Part 3 of 5, CARELIFE Identifying.
This article was written by Chris Teske
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