Listening skills are the golden center of a therapist’s, friends, spouses, or significant others value to those that need an ear to fill. Not being a therapist it is sometimes more damaging to say what you think or know or think you know to the one who seems lost in a brightly lit, multi-signed world. We sometimes fail to conceive of another’s blindness and simply say “Open your eyes and stop this silliness”. While I have found that sharing information about how to change undesirable events from re-occurring is sometimes helpful, it is not always the case.
I have been the goto guy for people to expel their problems on for as long as I can remember. At times I have been Dr. Phil and alienated someone to the point that they never talked to me again. “I didn’t need your advice nor was I asking for it” I would hear sometimes,”I just needed to vent to someone because it was really bothering me but now I see how you think of me so I wont be bothering you anymore”. Most the time I felt bad about this but other times it was a much needed amputation of an infectious nature that antibiotics would only serve to make it grow.
So when you move on in life to relationships that become more than platonic it is usually best in these relationships to just “shut up and listen”. Your ideas and thoughts will most likely not be taken as empathetic, but rather a further attack or belittling of a problem that really disturbs the other person. This is a bad habit or broken thought process that haunts me to this very day. It starts fires where there is friction and dumps water on soaked souls. Now does this mean you should never? Of course not. There will always be those that want to here and you should always know just because you and experts say so, you should clarify that yours is just a screwdriver in the tool belt of life and yours is far from being full. Your just passing it along to someone else so they may see if it works for them. The more tools people have to work with, the more likely people can fix their own problems. Sometimes they just need to hold it in their hands for a bit before deciding to use it and rushing them or telling them how to do it can cause misuse and BLAM, Its all your fault.
So listen more and speak less. Sometimes “I see, wow or Uh huh” are all the more words a person needs to make them feel like you care.