One of the most reliable ways of improving wellbeing is to develop good relationships and listening well helps you do that. This course introduces four essential listening skills.
|At a time that suits you
Listening well can also make you more effective in your work if listening to people is part of that, and your life more satisfying if you open more to the richness that comes through listening well, including music, self-awareness and nature, as well as conversation. Yet have you ever had any systematic training in how to be a good listener? or explored how to further develop this life-enhancing capacity? This online course explores learnable skills that help you listen well, with a series of weekly live webinars of 90 minutes each, supported by an online resource hosting the recordings of the webinars plus additional videos and resources.
The course is led by Chris Johnstone, who’s been involved in teaching communication skills for over three decades. The course also features guest contributor Bea Strickland, who also brings decades of experience in teaching listening skills.
Webinar 1 – The skill of giving attention
Can you remember times you’ve felt listened to well, and also occasions when this hasn’t happened? A likely difference is that you knew the good listener was paying attention. We can become more skilful at this, and a great starting point is recognising why it is important. We look at giving attention as a choice that is easier to make when we recognise its value. Then we look at strategies and understandings that help us do this, drawing on the work of Drs John and Julie Gottman, Carol Dweck and the growth mindset, William Miller and Motivational Interviewing, Carl Rogers and therapeutic relationships, plus Thomas Gordon on addressing obstacles to listening.
Webinar 2 – The skill of expressing empathy
Research shows that expression of empathy improves outcomes in helping relationships – it also helps more everyday conversations by letting the person we’re listening to know that we’ve taken in and understood what they’ve said. We’ll look at the skill and art of reflective listening, and also ways of improving the accuracy of empathy.
Webinar 3 – The skill of deepening engagement
Can you remember conversations that have left you feeling closer? Or times you felt someone really understood you when they’ve engaged at a level deeper than just the words you’ve said? We look at how to help relationships deepen through improving our ability to listen to both feelings and meanings that might not be clear on the surface.
Webinar 4 – The skill of building trust
Are there some people you find it easier to talk with than others? What does a good listener do that helps you feel safe enough to go deeper? While you can build trust by being trust-worthy, that’s not the only way. You can also apply understandings and skilfulness to building psychological safety. We’ll look at practical ways to help support trust, including ways of responding to conflict and difficult moments in conversation.