Looking to understand before attempting to be understood is something Mr. Covey writes in, “The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People,” is the key in all interpersonal relationships. He tells us that when someone attempts to talk about an issue or problem they are having; we are doing more damage than good a lot of the time if we just rush in and try to fix things without first fully understanding the situation.
There are four basic types of communication that we use from the time we wake up until the time we go to sleep. They are reading, writing, speaking and listening. Continue reading Character And Communication: Habit 5: Seek First To Understand Then To Be Understood: Stephen R. Covey’s The 7 Habits Of Highly Effective People Book Chapter Summary.
Empathetic listening doesn’t mean that you listen with the intent to reply. It doesn’t mean using reflective listening techniques, or attentive listening, as if you really wanted to hang on someone’s every word. Continue reading Empathetic Listening: Habit 5: Seek First To Understand Then To Be Understood: Stephen R. Covey’s The 7 Habits Of Highly Effective People Book Chapter Summary.
If you attempt to come up with a solution for a person’s dilemma before you fully understand it do you honestly think they are ever going to fully trust you? Would you trust your mechanic to bill you for parts for your car that he only thinks are broken based purely on what you are telling him is wrong? Maybe Unless you know for a fact that the person is an automotive psychic You would expect him “or her” to take a look at your car and do some work on it “first” before requesting payment, “Right?” The point here is; if you are the one playing mechanic when someone brings a problem to you; the only really good way to insure that they will trust you and what you prescribe as a solution for them to work with is through your practice of empathetic listening.
Mr. Covey tells us that the four autobiographical responses (listening to people through the lens of our own experience) that most people use have their place in the world. But they alone do not cut it when it comes to effective communication. Continue reading Four Autobiographical Responses: Habit 5: Seek First To Understand Then To Be Understood: Stephen R. Covey’s The 7 Habits Of Highly Effective People Book Chapter Summary.
In order to seek true understanding of another individual; Stephen writes, under this heading, that we need to learn how to listen in such a way as to see things through the eyes of that individual. If we are willing to take the time to do this there will be way less confusion of what it is they are saying. He says in his book that this is because we will have a clearer understanding as to how they perceive things related to what they are talking to us about. If we make it our habit to seek understanding before giving one solitary thought to making ourselves understood; we are in an excellent position to fully enjoy all of the wondrous benefits of synergistic relationships!
Mr. Covey has a few suggestions as to what we can do with habit five. One is to focus on a relationship where we sense that our emotional bank account with that person is overdrawn. He suggests writing out the details of our situation with them from their prospective and to reflect upon whether or not we really had reached an understanding of them; how they see things. Continue reading Habit Five Application Suggestions: Habit 5: Seek First To Understand Then To Be Understood: Stephen R. Covey’s The 7 Habits Of Highly Effective People Book Chapter Summary.