Essay - Practical Book Review Reflections on James C. Peterson's Why Don't...

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Practical Book Review

***** on James C. Peterson's Why Don't We Listen Better? Communicating and Connecting in Relationships

Introduction: "Hey, that's not what I meant!" Using ***** C. ***** 'talker-listener' card to engage in productive dialogue

Of course, I know how to communicate—I ***** how to talk, and I can hear everyth*****g people say to me, what more do I need to do? Why do I need ***** read a book, in isol*****tion, ***** the privacy of my study that attempts to tell ***** how I should communicate with others? However, individuals who have such a re*****ction to the title of Why Don't We Listen Better? ***** ***** Connecting in Relationships by James C. Petersen (2007) should remember that there is a difference between listening and hearing, between really engaging with others in meaningful communication versus simply exchanging words. Peterson's text attempts ***** give the reader effective strategies to improve personal communication processes. His approach ***** be useful to pastors, counselors, teachers, or simply everyone involved in a rel*****tionship who wants to ***** his or her ***** skills.

The book begins by examining why communication processes so often go awry. One of the core concepts of the work is that the ***** emotional people are, and the more emotionally attached they are to a particular point ***** view, the harder it is for them to l*****ten. Their listening capability, if ***** their hearing capability shuts down. Peterson calls t***** the 'flat brain theory' of listening, where stomachs are in overload, filled with ego rather than openness. This causes hearts grow bricklike and unresponsive to the emotional appeals of others. The courtroom process of adversarial interaction rather than a ***** negoti*****tion of common views ***** the primary paradigm of our modern culture. While courtroom battles may look like win-lose, they are in reality lose-lose. ***** the courtroom approach is counterproductive ***** our usual, ***** goal when communicating. In everyday l*****e our primary goal is not to be victors over others, but friends with ***** neighbors, loved ones, ***** colleagues. Reducing ***** disturbances, clarifying thinking, increasing self-confidence, and building supportive friendships ***** all essential to counteract our fallible and all-too-human tendency to fall in***** negative cultural and personal patterns ***** relat*****g to others. Becoming a good listener reduces conflict and also makes us better storytellers and better people

Peterson offers what he ***** t***** 'talker-listener' card or a kind of im*****ginary or invisible third person, a mediat***** to initiate ***** ***** division. Playing by the rules of the conversational game, taking turns, ***** not engaging in a war like street fighters all ensure that the *****dividuals engaged in the communicative ***** are listen*****g as well ***** talking. Peterson ***** communication in***** a very liter*****l game, with accessories as well ***** rules. During his communications *****shops, he takes manila *****s and writes t***** word '*****alker' ***** 'listener' on either side. This creates a sense of role-pl*****y to conversation—one person is ***** fixed in a singular role of listening or talking, which ***** results


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