Most of us listen head to head, and while we listen we categorize, we analyze, we evaluate and we judge what the other is saying.
The four ways that we typically respond when listening head to head is 1) take things personally, 2) move into defending or proving, 3) tell our own similar story, or 4) try to offer solutions.
When we listen head to heart, we tap into our curiosity and try to discover more without analyzing or judging.
When we listen heart to heart, we build connections through empathy and compassion. We look beyond the words and behavior and into the heart.
First, think about 3-5 previous encounters with someone whose emotions where anything but JOYOUS. From where you stand now, how can you listen to their heart? What do you think they were feeling and needing in that moment? Please go back to the needs guide that I posted under Day 4 as a support if you need it.
Secondly, start practicing listening to understand or listening with empathy and compassion. Listen differently with your kids, with your partner, with your friends, and with your colleagues. Talk less and listen more.