Deb Toering is a Board Certified Professional Christian Counselor (BCPCC) in private practice at Trinity Family Counseling Center. In addition to working with a wide range of client populations and presenting issues, Deb is also an engaging public speaker. She has spoken in front of various groups across a range of topics including marriage, bullying, ADHD/ADD, and teen leadership.
A familiar quote says, “God gave us mouths that close and ears that don’t for a reason.”
One of the greatest blessings in life is just to have someone listen to us--really listen. Someone who genuinely wants to know and understand what life must be like for us; what do we think and how do we feel? To listen without interrupting, without judgment, and without making assumptions. To even ask from time to time, “Tell me more…” and then graciously reflect back to make sure what was heard was what was intended. This is listening at its best.
To say to another, “Take your time; I am here for you. I want to listen.” is a gift. We are often impatient and in a hurry to get on to the next thing. Our natural tendency is to want to be heard and make our opinions known. Good listening requires that we put “us” aside for a time and try to put ourselves in the other’s shoes. What must the other be feeling or experiencing?
Can you remember a time when you really felt heard, understood and accepted? Will you consider offering this gift to someone else? Think about the effect this kind of listening would have on your relationships, your work and the world! An added bonus is the joy that comes from doing what the Creator designed us to do!