Are You Not Being Heard?

by Gary Loper on January 12, 2017

Building Better Relationships is essential in all areas of your life, starting with yourself, your partner, family, prospects and customers, teams and community.

Relationships start with ourselvesFirst, relationships start with ourselves. When we master that relationship, we then can broaden and expand our relationships with others. One of the biggest enhancements for relationship building is attention and availability, help others be their best, while maintaining your best.

What is the most effective tool for relationship building? Be an effective listener.

Years ago I learned Reflective Listening from Harville Hendrix, Ph.D.,
a Clinical Pastoral Counselor who is known internationally for his work with couples. This method is also known as Imago Relationship Therapy, “Conscious Partnership”. Immediately I knew that it was valid, worthwhile and valuable, one of the best resources for Building Better Relationships, not just with your partner but in all areas of your life.  

LISTENINGEffective tools for listening are first and foremost staying focused on the other person, listen attentively. A critical aspect is to listen without reacting to the other person’s thoughts, feelings, emotions and body language. It is important to stay non-reactive, and not take things personally. Essentially reflect back what you heard, never try to fix the problem. However, you can lead with questions. The emphasis also should be on validation, and providing understanding and empathy. Importantly, wound bounding is a very ineffective way to connect with people. Although the initial intention may be to share understanding and empathy, it conveys a message of self-importance. It alienates the other person, and often leads to frustration that they are not being heard. Wound bounding takes away from the other person’s hurts and pains, and delays the healing process.

Although Reflective Listening may feel unfamiliar and even challenging when you first initiate the process, after time it will become familiar and welcomed in your relationships. Remember listening is a learned skill. It is vital that the other person knows they matter and feel recognized.

Motivational speaker Jim Rohn notably said “Be so busy giving recognition that you don’t need it.” I have learned over time to replace the word, ‘recognition’ with anything else whether it is love or respect, etc.

Put the needs of others first by loving them, and recognizing and validating them first, and you will be amazed at how much will come back to you. It will be even more than what you expect. That is the ‘Golden Key’ to ‘Give First’, love them the way they want to be loved, and then you will wind up getting back all that you wanted and more.

These three words are vital: Give, Give, Give. Focus on the needs of others. It is far more important to understand their needs before you share your needs. By giving unconditionally the Universe will see to your compensation from unexpected people, in unexpected places, at unexpected times.

Platinum RuleOften people express that we should love by the Golden Rule. I prefer to embrace the Platinum Rule. Everybody knows the Golden Rule. The Golden Rule states ‘we should do onto others as we would do onto ourselves’. Whereas, the Platinum Rule states ‘we should do onto others as they would do onto themselves’. If I loved you the way I want to be loved, it is not going to fulfill your needs.

Although I have mentioned this story previously, it still is a perfect illustration of loving someone by the Golden Rule.  This story is one that was conveyed to me by my first coach. He received a phone call from his wife one day. She said, “Meet me downtown.” And, he said, “Why?” She said, “Just meet me downtown.” So, he met her downtown and they were on the corner, and he said, “What’s going on? Why are we here?” She stated, “Just follow me.” They go in the building, into an elevator, and get off at a marriage counselor’s office. And, he looked at his wife, and stated, “Why are we here?” She still said nothing. They get into the counselor’s office. The counselor asked, “Why are you here?” Now she finally opened up and expressed, “Well, he doesn’t love me!” He voiced, “What do you mean I do not love you?!!! I hug you all of the time.” She looked at her husband and conveyed, “But, you never say the words.” In his culture, his family hugged as an expression of love. Throughout their entire relationship she felt unloved, because her family expressed love with words. She needed to hear the words, I Love You. And, he never said those words. So, even though he loves her, and feels great about their relationship, she feels he doesn’t love her because he hasn’t expressed it verbally.

5 Love LanguagesImportantly, if you learn each others love languages – how they best respond to love, how they feel loved – you will create a healthy, loving relationship. Gary Chapman wrote an excellent book called ‘The Five Love Languages’. Everybody has five primary needs in love: receiving gifts, words of affirmation, acts of service, physical touch, and quality time.

The key aspect here is to listen with Reflective Listening and the other person’s Love Language. All these insights can be applied to more than your personal relationship, to all areas of your life, both personal and business.

Here are the Keys to Building Better Relationships:

  • Help others be their best, while maintaining your best.
  • Be an effective listener.
  • Stay focused on the other person, listen attentively.
  • Listen without reacting to the other person’s thoughts, feelings, emotions and body language.
  • Reflect back what you heard, never try to fix the problem.
  • You can lead with questions.
  • Validate, provide understanding and empathy.
  • Never use wound bounding as a way to connect with people.
  • Put the needs of others first by loving them, and recognizing and validating them.
  • Love them the way they want to be loved.
  • Give unconditionally.
  • Express love by the Platinum Rule.
  • Learn each others love languages.

The greatest motivational act one person can do for another is to listen ~ Roy Moody

Whether you need help in your personal life or in your business, I can help you with the one thing that you can change today to improve you or your business. Sign up for a 30-Minute Strategy Session Call for $25, valued at $100.


Who, What and Why --- The 3-Step Approach to Embracing Twitter

We have all seen a shift in our own patterns or in those of the people around us, from a small interaction, a scene in a movie or television, a song at a specific time, a memory of something someone said to us years ago, even a tweet. To an outside observer that little ‘nudge’ appears to be almost nothing. But when we are open to receive the messages, the universe will use any and every source of media to bring the message that the soul needs its carrier to hear, in order to continue its journey of growth and expansion.

  1. What does that say? Messages we share can have a massive impact in the lives of people anywhere in the world. By sharing those messages that are a part of our mission and purpose in life on earth and using Twitter as a delivery system, we all can fulfill one of the intents of why we became an entrepreneur, or have had dreams about helping others and changing the world.
  1. Who will be changed by our messages? We never know who will be changed by our message, and I am going to strongly suggest – that the ‘who’ is not as important as developing a ‘serve others’ first mindset. In developing this, your mission – if you choose to accept it – to knowingly go forward into the Twitterverse: share positive messages of hope, joy, kindness, growth, change, spiritual development, inspiration, motivation and peace.
  1. Why should you share your messages? The beauty is that we all are coming from different experiences, occupations and backgrounds, and those uplifting messages combined with your unique perspectives are just what is intended for you to share with the world. There are people waiting to connect with each of us. And, because of those unique circumstances, it will create a bridge of trust with them that you know their pain and can relate to what they are feeling – even if you never actually speak to them in person. By not digging deep into yourself to discover your true passions and the messages you were meant to share with the world, you are depriving those individuals the opportunity to better their life through your story of lifting yourself through the tough times.

The remarkable thing you will experience is that by embracing this approach (combined with a sound marketing plan) to contributing to the greater good of others in the world; first, you will attract the attention of new business opportunities, partners, and customers. We don’t know who knows who, and who is watching for incredible new projects and people to work with.


Gary’s article originally appeared in Small Biz Social Hub – Expertise + Insights Contributed by Social Media Pros, Exclusively for Small Businesses.


Also, you may be interested in listening to Gary’s interview:

How To Utilize Twitter For Your Business

Hosts Robert Palmer and Caleb McElveen of Search Talk Live interview Gary on how to utilize Twitter for your business.

“Every tweet is an audition” ~ #GaryLoper

“Twitter is a long-term relationship that you want to build and substantiate overtime” ~ #GaryLoper


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