Listening is Fixing

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Can you JUST listen and not be “Oz the Fixer of All Things”?  How many times have felt you had to fix your loved one’s problems?  How often have you ended up in conflict or an argument because your partner, child or loved one didn’t feel heard when sharing their problems, but instead felt minimized or dismissed because you immediately offered a solution of “you should…. why don’t you…here’s what you need to do”.    Leaving you feeling frustrated and rejected because they are now mad at you, and they never listen to you. 

I encourage you to ask yourself, “why do I need to fix others… what does that do for me…how does that make me feel?”  Examining our own behavior helps us to make adjustments.  Do I feel frustrated when I hear my loved one struggling?  Do I feel responsible to protect them all the time? Does it make me feel important and needed when I offer a solution to fix their problems?  Do I feel annoyed and view their verbal processing as negativity? 

What would happen if you stopped being the “fixer” and started being the “listener”?  What if listening was fixing?  Being present and listening to your loved ones can demonstrate understanding, empathy, compassion and caring.  Listening is a skill.  Often, we “hear” people talking but we aren’t “listening”.  Practice listening to your family and friends.  Be present and engaged with listening to what they are saying and not preoccupied with how you will respond.  Put down your screens and listen.  You may be pleasantly surprised at how many issues are “fixed” when you “listen”. 

For more guidance with “Listening is Fixing”, please contact one of the therapists for an appointment at 316-613-3995 or click on “Contact” to send an email.