Are you listening? Pt 5 – Listening with your mouth

Equipping, Listening
In the last two postings I have highlighted the place for the ears and the eyes as means of listening. Now I will come to the third, the mouth. Your mouth is also an important part of communication of course, but how can it help you to listen? There are a number of ways your mouth can help you listen but the most important is to know when to keep it shut! Shut up What do you feel about silence? Does it embarrass you? Somehow it makes you feel vulnerable as you either don’t know what to say or because you feel awkward for the other person as they gather their thoughts. The temptation is to fill it with your own talk. This is particularly true of the extrovert who…
Read More

Are you listening? Pt 4 Listening with your eyes

Community Money Advice, Equipping, Listening
Eye contact Last time I referred to kneeling down to get onto eye level with someone who was sitting on the pavement outside a supermarket. Clearly that is an extreme example but the principle of making good eye contact is vital. It has been said that ‘the eye is the window if the soul’ (often, probably wrongly, attributed to Shakespeare) and in that quotation lies a depth of insight. By watching someone’s eyes it is possible to 'hear' much of what is going on in his soul. Reporting on some of the countries I have visited I have, on occasion, said that people’s eyes lacked hope, they were ‘dead’. I don’t know physiologically what I was seeing but I knew it was in contrast to someone’s eyes that sparkle! So…
Read More