Have you ever tried talking to a man who is reluctant to share his emotions? Perhaps there was an invisible barrier between the two of you. The more you tried to convince him to “open up,” the more he shut down.
A man’s emotions can be guarded more safely than the most expensive treasures on earth. And gaining that man’s initial trust so that he is comfortable enough to share himself can be achieved with some difficulty. However, any trust that has been gained will have to be protected, if one wishes to maintain that trust. Regaining trust that has been lost is an even more difficult task.
Sharpening one’s listening skills is imperative to strengthening your bond with another. One thing that helps is…
listening for the purpose of understanding.
Listening for the sake of understanding the person who is speaking does not solve all problems connected to addiction. Rather, it serves the purpose of laying a strong foundation. It contributes to a healthy environment – one that encourages openness and promotes trust. When one listens for the sake of understanding, the person who is speaking has more of an opportunity to feel safe.