Help People Listen: How To

Jasbina Ahluwalia asks Dr. Lisa Bobby, a Board Certified Life Coach: In terms of a solution to this, share how you go about repairing the fabric of a relationship to deal with the issues that are coming up to the surface.



Dr. Lisa Bobby

There are a number of interventions that we use in marriage counseling.

One of the biggest ones is something that every single one of your listeners can do at home tonight.

That is to help people to listen.


Help People Listen: Wanting To Be Heard

I’ve been married forever and I’ve had this experience. When things start to get heated, we often assume a position of wanting to be heard.

We start talking about how we feel, our perspective and what we think is the right answer. We get very focused on promoting our own agenda.


Help People Listen: Hear Them

As a marriage counselor, a lot of what I do is simply get people to stop talking and really start listening to their partner.

They need to hear what the other person is trying to say. I don’t have to agree with it.

I don’t have to believe it, but I do have to listen to what they’re saying and acknowledge their perspective as being their truth.


Help People Listen: Positive Response

This is not just hearing their words, but communicating back to them, “I understand how you feel. When I look at the situation through your eyes, I can see how it makes sense.”

As soon as people feel understood and like their partners have some empathy for them that goes such a long way to restoring trust and repairing the fabric in a relationship.


Help People Listen: Take Initiative

Anyone can be the one to start. If my husband and I were starting to get into a conflict, for 10 minutes, I could put all of my energy into listening to him and helping him feel like I understand him. He would calm right down.

As soon as he did, he would be more than happy to listen to me, too. When we’re both trying to be heard at the same time, that’s when fights happen.

That is one of the biggest things that marriage counselors do to help people heal their relationships.


Jasbina Ahluwalia

Help People Listen: Understanding

I love that. It’s easier said than done, I understand. It’s easier to understand before speaking to be understood.

If we do that, the chances of both people feeling understood is far greater.


Dr. Lisa Bobby

Help People Listen: Be Generous

Yes, but you have to be willing to go first.

I think sometimes people worry that they’re giving too much, that they won’t be heard if they listen to their partner. The idea is to be generous.

It’s okay to be the one who gives to change a relationship.


Tell Us:

Can you help people listen with the provided advice? Listen and make sure they are heard. Share your experiences with this advice in the comments section below.


The above is an excerpt from Jasbina’s interview with Dr. Lisa Bobby

The entire interview transcript is at: Dr. Lisa Bobby Interview – Relationship Patterns (and How to Overcome Them)

Listen to the entire interview on: Intersections Match Talk Radio – Jasbina’s Lifestyle Show

Listen to the entire interview on Blog Talk Radio: NetIP Spotlight- Live Your Potential: Relationship Patterns (and How to Overcome Them) – Dr. Lisa Bobby

Listen to the entire interview on iTunes