How we change what others think, feel, believe and do
The ChangingMinds Blog!
Listening to friends
A friend came around recently to ask for some business advice. She's setting up by herself and knew that I am a business consultant. So we talked about customers, competitors, products, plans, finance and so on. Starting a business is a tricky financial affair as income can start slowly, so I gently enquired if she had enough other income to sustain her while the business grew.
This seemed ok, but then I noticed a change in her body language so I slowed down and just raised my eyebrows a little. And then out came a list of woes and troubles that clearly had been burdening her. This seemed a place to change hats, from consultant to counsellor, and in particular to going into listening mode. When people want to talk, when they have knots inside, then the best thing to do is just listen. It can seem a little thing to you but it can easily be significant for them.
When she had got out what she needed to get out we talked through some practical activities she could do, including ways just to feel better about herself. She seemed to feel a bit better afterwards and I was happy to be able to a little. In a strange way I was grateful for her trust and allowing me to offer some thoughts. So perhaps it was a two-way street. I guess that's something about what friends do.
A true friend should give proper support, care, love and guidance. Service and sacrifice are the two qualities that we expect from a true friend.
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