Essence includes, but is not limited to, the silence between the words; tone of voice, inflection, and genuineness; repeated or emphasized ideas; emotions; why something is being said; and what's being left out. Essence is around, underneath, and inside the energy of the words.
When your heart is open, you'll perceive what is being expressed at the heart of another's words. Seek to understand the feelings, beliefs, needs, fears, pain, and yearnings of the ones you care about.
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When you perceive that someone is trying to communicate more than he is saying, if appropriate, be willing to ask questions that help to clarify your knowingness. "What I sense you are getting at is …" or "What else do you feel about that?" Compassionate Listening
Then, allow the other person the space to discover and reveal deeper levels of his heart and mind. How many times in relationships have you argued with someone about one thing, and when you stopped and truly listened, you realized that it wasn't even the real issue? Instead of making assumptions as if you already know what the other person is thinking and what their motives and needs are, simply ask.
It will also help you to be aware of the context surrounding another's words. His context includes the location and conditions from where he is speaking (airport, bedroom, car, with company, etc.) as well as what has gone on or is going on in his life (he started a new relationship, is moving or switching jobs, or has an ill mother).
Context and emotion greatly impact what's actually being shared and why. If you get people's context and motivation, they'll feel moved by the way you pay attention. 3 Steps To Connect To His Heart
Ask Powerful Questions
Here are some questions to ask in order to more fully understand the heart of your child, partner, friend, relative, or coworker:
- What is most important to him right now?
- What does she yearn for or dream about?
- What inspires or energizes him, and what takes his energy away?
- What is her greatest fear, pain, or wound?
- Why is he experiencing the emotions he is?
- What allows her to feel safe or vulnerable, and what causes her to close down?
- What is his pattern when he is scared, tired, or overwhelmed?
- What restores her, makes her feel easier, or brings her peace?
- What is his communication style (i.e., visual, auditory, digital, and/or kinesthetic)?
- What makes her feel most loved (words of appreciation, gifts, quality time given to them, touch, understanding)?
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Finally, have fun listening! The quality of your energy is the most important thing you give in communication. You can read about other aspects of listening in my new book: Being Love: 26 Keys to Experiencing Unconditional Love, available on Amazon.com and BarnesandNoble.com.