Reality Check: What Kind of Listener Am I?

By Gaylyn Williams, With 0 comments

Reality Check: What Kind of Listener Am I?

The ear tests words like the tongue tastes food.

Job 34:3

Excerpted from God’s Design for Community Online Course.

Many people think they are good at listening, yet most people don’t know how to really listen so the other person feels heard and valued. Listening has become a lost art.

Holly, a seminary student, told me, “I’m a great listener.” Yet every time I tried to talk to her, she would interrupt and change the subject. On the other hand, when I talk to Louis, I know he listens. He leans forward, nods his head, asks questions to make sure he understands and repeats what he heard me say.

Which person would make you feel more valued?

Take the following self-assessment to see how you are doing.

How Am I at Building Relationships?

Consider how you are at listening to family, friends and others in your communities. Use this scale to indicate your responses.

1 = Hardly ever; 2 = Occasionally; 3 = Sometimes;

4 = Often; 5 = Nearly always

Family Others

____    ____    1.   I am patient with those who have difficulty putting their feelings into words.

____    ____    2.   When someone wants to talk with me, I make sure he is physically comfortable.

____    ____    3.   I am concerned and empathetic when someone expresses very deep feelings.

____    ____    4.   If I need uninterrupted time, I do whatever I can to get alone so I don’t have to tell people not to bother me.

____    ____    5.   When others share with me, I encourage them to continue as long as they need to, without changing the subject.

____    ____    6.   I give appropriate eye contact, looking at the person enough but not too much.

____    ____    7.   My body posture and other nonverbal behavior communicate interest in the person.

____    ____    8.   I hold in strict confidence what is shared with me unless I have permission to share.

____    ____    9.   I respect others’ privacy by encouraging them, without force or manipulation, to share from the heart.

____    ____    10. I withhold making judgments until I’ve heard the whole story.

This is only part of the assessment in God’s Design for Community, which has numerous assessments, assignments, Scriptures and more to empower you in all your relationships. You can find out more about it at

Excerpted from God’s Design for Community Online Course. It is filled with powerful, biblical principles that will empower you to transform all your relationships and communities.

Here is what people are saying about this material:

“I am really impressed with the training materials, depth and well-thought-out information.” Susan, Denver Seminary student

“You’ve given us something that really can affect the kingdom of God.” A ministry leader

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