In relationships most people are focused on what they want to say, and if you ask them later about the conversation, what they remember is what they said. Setting aside our own agenda to listen to someone else is difficult, especially when we feel that their perspective is off, or their attitude and tone of voice is critical or derogatory, but it can be done.
Part of the problem is that we feel we have a right to express ourselves and it’s true that we do, but listening well involves setting aside that right, something most of us are unwilling to do. Actually putting other people ahead of ourselves is really hard and it takes a lot of internal strength. The rewards for being a good listener are very high. People love talking with someone who actually listens.
James1:19 says “Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry”. Usually we get it all backwards and end up being slow to listen, quick to speak, and quick to become angry.
Have fun trying to be a good listener!