Seek First to Understand, Then to be Understood: Listen Before you Talk 

Seek First to Understand means to listen to how other people feel before sharing your thoughts.  This is one of the hardest habits to master, but it's also one of the most important.  A wise woman once told me that you have 2 ears, but only 1 mouth for a reason.  You should use your ears more often. Sometimes we get so wrapped up in getting our point across, that we completely ignore the other person. 

HOW CAN I SEEK FIRST TO UNDERSTAND IN MY LIFE?

  • Listen with your eyes, ears, and heart.  -Try to make eye contact when someone is talking to show them that you're paying attention.  Use your ears to hear what they have to say and how they feel.  Lastly, use your heart to empathize with them and care about what they are sharing with you.
  • Repeat back what you hear. -To make sure you really understand, repeat what the other person said.
  • Help friends when you see them having a misunderstanding. -Help them take turns explaining their sides of the story.  Remind the other person that it is not their turn to talk yet.  After they listen to the other person, they'll get their chance to share their feelings.  When that time comes, make sure the one who already shared listens to other as well.

WHAT BOOKS CAN HELP ME LEARN ABOUT SEEK FIRST TO UNDERSTAND?

  • Stellaluna by Janell Cannon
  • The True Story of the Three Little Pigs by Jon Scieszka
  • Rules by Cynthia Lord
  • Veronica Knows Best by Nancy Robinson