The Value of Listening

Often when a friend or loved one has a problem about something or has an issue to talk about, we feel as though we need to fix it and find a solution.

It is a natural reaction I suppose – we are usually inclined to want to help make things better for those we care about.

It has been my experience both as the one with the problem and as the one listening to the problem, that being on the other end as a listener is often enough.

For the person with the problem, being heard and given a platform to vent and hear themselves talk can many times help them find ways to help themselves.

Allowing someone to hear themselves and feel heard can work wonders in their process of figuring things out. Validating someone’s pain and confusion is so very important. Responses such as:

I hear you

That must be difficult

I can’t imagine that is easy for you

I understand

I’m so sorry about that

That must not have made you feel very good

It’s not fun to feel________________

etc. can serve as healing words to soften the edges of a problem.

This is especially true with children. As a teacher, I can’t tell you how many times I have been able to calm a child just by listening to them. Many a tear has stopped falling when they know someone who cares is hearing them.

People, big and small, just want to be heard and not feel alone. Be that soft ear for your fellow human.

Just be there to listen…you are helping more than you think.


9 thoughts on “The Value of Listening

  1. Listening is extremely important! So glad you spoke on it. I just discussed recently with a very close friend of mine about listening and the fact that I usually choose not to try and fix things for people. When I vent I just wanna vent and a lot of times I’m rubbed he wrong way when someone starts telling me what I should do when all I wanted was a listening ear. So unless specifically asked for advice or unless it’s a dangerous situation, I usually just listen and offer support. It’s something missed a lot these days. Great post!

    1. Thank you so much for the comment! I guess we often feel we have to offer a solution but often times there is no immediate solution. Having someone listen and validate you is precious!

  2. So true. All I need is someone to listen to and then forget what I said. I don’t want anything coming back to me after I have vented. A true friend is there to listen and give me a hug. Well said Susie.

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