Author: Rick Warren
One of the most common causes of frustration and friction at work is that we don't really listen to each other. Too often we talk at each other rather than with each other.
Research shows that you spend about 40% of your waking hours listening. But most of the time you are only listening at 25% efficiency. That creates many of your problems. Fortunately, listening is a skill that can be developed.
The benefits of learning how to listen are enormous: fewer mistakes, better negotiating, greater wisdom, more friends, less arguments, and much, much more.
The Bible says, "Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to become angry." If you do the first two, (be quick to listen and slow to speak) the third will be automatic.
3 THINGS HINDER OUR HEARING:
· PRESUMPTION - when we think we already know it all.
"He who answers before listening is put to shame." Pr.29:20
· IMPATIENCE - when you interrupt & jump to conclusions.
"There is more hope for a fool than for a man who speaks in haste." Pr. 29:20
· PRIDE - when we are defensive and unteachable.
"The way of a fool seems right, but a wise man listens to advice." Pr. 12:15
You can learn from anyone if you know the right questions!
Let me suggest 3 "HEARING AIDS":
1. Listen with your eyes. Approximately 80% of communication is non-verbal. Facial expressions and body language usually tell the real story. Look at people when you listen to them!
2. Listen with your heart. Be sympathetic. Tune in to the emotions behind the words.
3. Make time to listen to the people around you. Tom Peters calls it "Managing By Walking Around."(MBWA)
I've had people tell me, "God never speaks to me!" Oh really? Is it possible that you've been too busy to listen? He wants to talk to you. Tune into Him this week. If you have a Bible, try reading Chapter 1 of the book of James. God speaks to those who take the time to listen! Have a great week.
Until next week...
1. Do you see yourself in any of the three hearing hindrances? How do you imagine that might impact your relationships and your own attitude?
2. Who do you know who is a good listener? How do they make you feel when you are talking with them? What is it that they do?
3. Choose one area to work on this week in the area of listening. Notice what impact it had on the people around you and how it made you feel? Don’t try it alone for God is the one who can change us from the inside out as we do our part.