"I am the vine; you are the branches." (John 15:5)

Being a Better Listener Part 2 of 2

This is the second of 2 articles on being a better listener. The tips from the first one were: be quiet, try to understand, pay attention, and reiterate. You can find those posted in the blog if you missed it. We have 4 more tips this week.

Don’t judge. Internally or externally. It may take some practice, but you can do it! People are perceptive and some will pick up if you are judgmental of someone no matter what you say. Always remember that you don’t know everything about another person’s situation. That doesn’t mean we agree with wrong or sinful behavior, but just as God accepts us, we need to accept others. It is valuable to think ahead of time about how to show acceptance of the person even when we disagree with their choices and/or thinking.

Listen for what is not said. Sometimes people say exactly what they mean, but more often than not, there is much more to the story. Sometimes they don’t want to share too much and at other times, they just might not have thought that far. Listen carefully and try to hear the meaning behind the words. Sometimes what a person is trying to say is lost behind a clutter of words as they think through it out loud.

Watch body language. Sometimes a person’s posture or gestures can say more than words. Eyes, hands and arms often tell a different story than the words they are using! Trust body language to clue you in to how the person is feeling.

Affirm. Thank people for sharing. Especially when it is difficult. Words like: “Thanks for sharing that. I’m sure it isn’t easy to talk about right now ” build acceptance for talking about difficult things and makes it easier for others to share.


January 13, 2012 - Posted by | Uncategorized

1 Comment »

  1. Good stuff – this guy is brilliant!

    Comment by Will | January 13, 2012 | Reply

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: