Numerous studies show that listening to music enhances mood, boosts immune response, and improves memory and concentration. But what about being listened to?
Active listening is described as fully listening and observing the speaker’s behavior and body language, and then relaying this information back to the speaker in such a way that a sense of shared meaning is arrived at.
When experiencing a sense of shared meaning, not only is there often a synchronization of the emotional experience, but also an enhanced feeling of understanding – something that is frequently lost during conflict.
In one study, it was the shared experience of gratitude that led to couples reporting that their relationships became stronger, more adaptable to change, and more positive than couples who had not shared experiences of gratitude (Kurtz & Algoe, 2015).
Another study done by researchers at the University of Chicago found that sharing the experience of watching a film together led to an emotional synchrony that increased the enjoyment of the experience (Ramanathan & McGil, 2017).
Sharing experiences profoundly improves our understanding of one another, and our enjoyment of the experience. But achieving this state requires that each person feels listened to, heard, and understood.
It is the art of active listening. In a therapeutic setting, active listening is an indispensable skill, without which clients can feel misunderstood, not validated, and not important. Moreover, accurate clinical diagnosis relies on fully understanding the client’s reality.
When the word “active” is added to “listening” it alters and amplifies the communication process to include a dynamic feedback loop in which the speaker and the listener validate that each party has been accurately heard. The result is that clients feel important, motivated and unsurprisingly, their self-esteem increases.
For the clinician, the benefits of active listening are no less important. Using active listening skills, clinicians become more confident and manage their therapy and counseling sessions with a broader and mutually respectful dialogue – and are much more likely to fully understand and synchronize with their clients.
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Active Listening: Techniques that Work for Children and Parents is a 3-hour online continuing education (CE/CEU) course that offers a valuable compilation of practical and ready-to-use strategies and techniques for achieving more effective communication through active listening. One of the fundamental tools of clinicians who work effectively with children and adolescents is the art of listening. Without this set of skills, clinicians are likely to miss essential pieces of information their clients are trying to communicate to them, whether with words or with behavior. When the word “active” is added to “listening” it alters and amplifies the communication process to include a dynamic feedback loop in which the speaker and the listener validate that each party has been accurately heard.
Appropriate use of listening skills by a clinician can increase self-esteem in young clients and motivate them to learn. Using active listening skills, clinicians become more confident and manage their therapy and counseling sessions with a broader and mutually respectful dialogue. This course will teach clinicians how to employ innovative and practical communication and conversational skills in their individual and group therapy sessions with clients and their families, as well as in their working relationships with other professionals. These techniques can be applied to a wide variety of clinical, classroom and home situations, and case examples are included. Also included are sections on positive thinking and resilience, problem-solving skills, and the communication of emotion. Course #30-90 | 2017 | 70 pages | 20 posttest questions
This online course provides instant access to the course materials (PDF download) and CE test. After enrolling, click on My Account and scroll down to My Active Courses. From here you’ll see links to download/print the course materials and take the CE test (you can print the test to mark your answers on it while reading the course document).
Successful completion of the online CE test (80% required to pass, 3 chances to take) and course evaluation are required to earn a certificate of completion. Click here to learn more. Have a question? Contact us. We’re here to help!
This course is sponsored by Professional Development Resources, a nonprofit educational corporation 501(c)(3) organized in 1992. We are approved to sponsor continuing education by the American Psychological Association (APA); the National Board of Certified Counselors (NBCC); the Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB); the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA); the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA); the Commission on Dietetic Registration (CDR); the Alabama State Board of Occupational Therapy; the Florida Boards of Social Work, Mental Health Counseling and Marriage and Family Therapy, Psychology & School Psychology, Dietetics & Nutrition, Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology, and Occupational Therapy Practice; the Ohio Counselor, Social Worker & MFT Board and Board of Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology; the South Carolina Board of Professional Counselors & MFTs; the Texas Board of Examiners of Marriage & Family Therapists and State Board of Social Worker Examiners; and are CE Broker compliant (all courses are reported within a few days of completion).
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