Seek First to Understand, Then to Be Understood. Stephen R. Covey, author The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People
When a teenage girl or a woman has been validated (listened to actively) over and over again over a period of years, I believe she will be less vulnerable and subject to physical, emotional and mental violence and violation. She will be less likely to enter into or stay in abusive relationships because of her higher self-esteem; the gift you as a father or man have given her from your caring and love to keep her safe and secure.
Men Stopping Violence
Men stopping violence: Do you, like most men, seek to be understood rather than understand your daughters and women?
What training do you have that enables you to really listen and understand another person?
Like most of us you probably have little or no communication training. You want to stress your point. Did you know 80% of communication lies in nonverbal cues, 15% in tone, and only 5% lies in the actual words? Do you focus only on the words and miss the meaning completely?
Do you listen with the intent on what you will say back? Do you filter everything you hear though your own life experiences and want to share them? For example, I had a similar thing happen to me.
First remember 80% of communication lies in nonverbal body language. Listen and observe nonverbal cues. Use your intuition or inner knowing and go deeper beyond the words. What do you sense that may be unexpressed that even your daughter has no awareness? Perhaps it is pain, confusion, conflict.
Become aware of wanting to agree, disagree, interrogate, fix the problem or talk about your own experiences. Stop! These types of habitual responses shut down communication. It takes time to change and form a new habit. Now instead of being the fixer or interrogator keep listening and accept whatever your daughter says.
Know your sole purpose lies in your daughter feeling like you really hear her. Look for or sense the nonverbal cues. Perhaps you see a body shudder or a tear. For example, you sense hurt. You could respond by saying, I see what your boyfriend did really hurt you. This type of response validates.
Note: Accepting how your daughter feels has nothing to do with whether you agree with her behavior or not. You may disagree with your daughter going out with the boyfriend. Validating her feelings has nothing to do with disagreeing, lecturing her or telling her she shouldn’t feel hurt or it will be okay.
Men Stopping Violence – Tips to Learn How to Validate in Communication:
To be able to validate means to listen actively. It means to listen to the meaning behind the words and feelings at a deeper level.
1. Offer to listen. Let your daughter know it is okay to have her feelings.
2. Be present physically and emotionally.
3. Listen without figuring out how to respond.
4. Allow your daughter to talk without interjecting with your past habitual answers.
5. Acknowledge your daughter’s feelings as you see, feel, or hear them.
6. Be accepting, patient, and non-judgmental. Accept your daughter’s uniqueness.
Validating may be enough for your daughter to continue talking. Sometimes you may need to ask questions like: I can see that really upset you; You look sad; Would you like to talk about it, etc.?
Men Stopping Violence – Summary:
• When your daughter/woman begins to feel safe and validated she will more likely continue sharing herself.
• As we validate our daughters/women, they will release their feelings and solve their conflicts in a healthy way without us having to give them advice.
• As we mirror back feelings by becoming more attuned to nonverbal cues and deeper feelings, both we and our daughters/women feel more connected.
Men Stopping Violence – Note: Active listening to validate means giving up your habitual ways of responding. Ask yourself how well did your old ways work in the past? Active listening, as you can see, also isn’t paraphrasing or parroting back what has been said.
Active listening takes practice. It takes a minimum of 21 days to form a new habit. Find someone you trust, a friend, a partner or your wife, practice with them and have them let you know when they feel validated. Have them also stop you and give you feedback when you get into fixing, solving or advice giving. Then go back to validating.
When you feel ready begin active listening to validate your daughter. It will change the whole nature of your relationship.
See also Men Stopping Violence: Communicate with Your Daughters & Women Part 3 https://www.emotionalhealthtips.com/men-stopping-violence-3/
See also Men Stopping Violence: Communicate with Your Daughters & Women Part 5 https://www.emotionalhealthtips.com/men-stopping-violence-5/
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Michael David Lawrience is the author of Emotional Health: The Secret from Drama, Trauma, and Pain His book provides ways for improving emotional health, easing pain and stress, healing physical and emotional abuse, and spiritual awakening. See book on Amazon https://www.amazon.com/Emotional-Health-Secret-Freedom-Trauma/dp/0615479170
Michael as a previous Residential and Self-Esteem Coach and Mentor has over 15 years’ experience teaching teen’s self-awareness, self-esteem, and self-reliance. See eBook Self Esteem- A Teen’s Guide for Girls https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B009L4JLMO This book is valuable for women also.
Michael offers Bowen Therapy in person in Sedona, Arizona for easing physical and emotional pain. https://www.emotionalhealthtips.com/bowen-therapy-sedona/
Michael also conducts personalized hiking tours in Sedona for emotional and spiritual breakthroughs.
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