We live in a culture where getting out the right sound bite often seems to be more important than listening to others. If we’re not careful, we can go day after day on the surface of relationships because we don’t take the time to listen. We don’t listen to our kids, and we don’t listen to our wives. Consequently, they begin to believe we don’t really care to know who they are.
Here are a few reasons why becoming a good listener will make you a better dad and husband:
1. Good listeners project respect.
This is a huge idea. When men listen to their wives with genuine interest, respect flows both ways. She feels valued as a person and then – in consequence – projects more respect back to her husband. The phrase, “win-win” comes to mind.
2. Good listeners fight less with their wives.
As a byproduct, men who listen with respect tend to have more peaceable relationships with their spouse. Many fights emerge from misunderstandings which are rooted in poor communication.
3. Active listeners are better equipped to respond and help.
Men cannot respond to what they screen out. Men cannot ask compassionate questions when they fail to hear the tones that reveals hurt. Men are unable to meet a need they have preemptively dismissed by failing to take the time to intentionally listen.
4. Good listeners are – in turn – listened to.
When we listen to our spouse and to our children, they become better listeners too. When we fail to listen because what we have to say is “more important” then communication is already compromised. Demonstrating interest in our spouse and our children actually facilitates their interest in us.Men who listen to their families are not only well-loved, they learn something too.Remember, kids are watching and tend to mirror our actions.
5. Good listeners become smarter.
If we fail to listen because we already know the answers, then we cut off both relationship and learning. Men who listen to their families are not only well-loved, they learn something too.
Huddle up with your family and ask, “What made you most happy today?”