Issues and Answers

Role Playing - Communication

Three Angels Broadcasting Network

Program transcript

Participants: Shelley Quinn (Host), Duane Anderson, Nancy Anderson


Series Code: IAA

Program Code: IAA000374

00:01 ¤ ¤
00:28 Hi, I'm Shelley Quinn. Welcome again to Issues and Answers.
00:33 Let me ask you a question. How are your communication
00:37 skills? Have you ever just absolutely lost it and said
00:41 something to somebody that you really didn't mean to say only
00:45 to see them react in such a negative way that you yourself
00:49 end up getting hurt. You know we all have to be careful how we
00:53 talk to one another don't we? Sometimes just these feelings
00:57 are bubbling up and they come out before you can really kind
01:01 of filter through them. But the Bible instructs us. Jesus said
01:06 in Luke 6:31 Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.
01:11 You've got to remember when someone's coming at you and
01:14 their feelings are raw and they're saying something that
01:18 perhaps you might misinterpret that if you can be the calm one
01:22 and do to them what you'd like someone to do to you in that
01:26 case then that's good communication skills.
01:30 Returning today we have a very special couple with us. They are
01:34 counselors and they are the co-founders of CARE Consultants.
01:38 That's C-A-R-E, stands for Care and Education Renewal
01:43 Consultants. So we want to thank you both, Duane and Nancy.
01:47 Thank you so much for coming back. Andersen - I forgot your
01:52 last name. I knew it but everybody else might not.
01:56 So you're coming to us from Mesa, Arizona. You've only been
02:03 retired from a pastorate since May and you're into full time
02:08 counseling now, but you've done a lot of counseling in the past.
02:13 I know that you all do a lot of seminars, go to churches. Let me
02:18 ask you a question up front. If somebody were interested in
02:21 coming to one of your seminars how would they find you?
02:25 Well first of all our website is a way to get in touch with
02:29 us. They can certainly do that. Our phone number, address and
02:33 everything is on the website.
02:34 And your website is dna, which is Duane and Nancy Andersen,
02:41 dna, just think about your DNA. dnasda for Seventh-day Adventist
02:50 dot org. So dnasda. org. Good. Okay. Now today we're going to
02:57 be continuing something that we've talked about in the past
03:01 few programs, but if you messed the others don't worry about
03:06 that, because what we've been talking about are communication
03:10 skills and what we're going to do today is just some role
03:13 playing. This ought to be fun because it will give you the
03:17 opportunity to actually see communication skills at work.
03:21 To begin with why don't we recap Duane why don't you talk about
03:26 some of the most basic communication skills, most
03:31 important of which is listening.
03:32 Exactly, yes. We want to make sure that we facilitate people
03:37 to go to a deeper level. So much of our everyday interaction is
03:42 on a surface level or shall we say head, cognitive, compared
03:46 with heart. But we've got a lot of heart issues going on that
03:51 to be addressed. Many times people have nobody to talk to,
03:56 nobody to unload their heart to another human being. Yes, we
04:00 unload it to the Lord but very often we need another person to
04:05 just be as if Christ was right there listening to us to unload
04:10 our ups and downs and hurts and have somebody listen in a way
04:15 that they use skills like paraphrasing for example.
04:19 Instead of blocking a person and saying oh well I had something
04:22 like that too and you know you just got to tough it out. Well
04:25 that's blocking the person. That's not facilitating them to
04:29 go to a deeper level. So the first think you would do is just
04:32 make sure you understand what the person is saying. So you
04:36 would paraphrase what they've said. I usually let them talk
04:41 for a while, maybe three, four, five sentences, maybe even five
04:46 minutes and do summary. Just say okay now let me see if I
04:49 understand you correctly. Then I'll go over the key points
04:52 that they're bringing out to make sure that I'm on the right
04:56 track, focusing completely on them, not bringing myself into
04:59 it at all. Because that is the thing that the person is looking
05:03 for. Who is going to listen to me and what's going on in my
05:08 life? Because hardly anybody really does that. I mean, I was
05:11 thinking in school. I worked in the school system too for a long
05:15 time and I thought well these kids talk to each other. They
05:18 don't need anybody to talk to. But these kids said, they don't
05:21 listen to me. These kids block each other. And they would
05:25 come down, of course, to the counselor's office and I would
05:28 have the opportunity to help them go through some things.
05:32 So yeah, paraphrase the statements that they're making
05:36 and then check in on their feelings, like I'm wondering if
05:40 you're feeling a little bit anxious about this or tense or
05:44 whatever type of feeling that their talking brought up inside
05:48 of me, because very often it'll bring up the same thing inside
05:52 of you as they're experiencing. So check that out. I was
05:55 wondering if you're feeling tense, I was wondering...
05:58 So a little boy comes to you and says my mom has cancer.
06:01 So that's a good thing to start trying to check his feelings and
06:06 let him talk it out, you know, about I'm wondering are you
06:10 feeling anxious about this, are you worried about the treatment,
06:14 you know, are you fearful that your mom might die? I mean, do
06:17 you go that far?
06:19 Yeah, I would start out you see with asking him well when did
06:23 you hear about this? You know, how long has it been. What was
06:28 your reaction when you heard? Have you heard anything lately?
06:32 You know, just to kind of find out where are they in this thing
06:36 Okay. Then walk them through the different stages. As they talk
06:41 you can also get things to pick up on that you can help them
06:46 work through. Then definitely do you think this is serious
06:49 enough that your mom might die or something? Did the hospital
06:53 say anything about this. You know just check it out because
06:57 what's he thinking? I mean you don't want to plant something in
07:00 his mind that would scare the little guy or something like
07:05 that but again these skills need to be practiced. We're not
07:10 saying that using these skills is going to turn somebody into
07:15 a therapist or a clinical psychologist or something
07:18 like this. This is just being a caring
07:20 human being. Yes, just being a caring human
07:22 being. Do unto others as you would like
07:25 them to do... Exactly, exactly so. Yeah people
07:28 shouldn't get carried away with the use of these but definitely
07:33 we should use them just to try and help people get through life
07:38 easier, we're helping to shoulder their burdens like the
07:41 scripture says. We talked about in one of our previous sessions
07:45 about weeping with those who weep and rejoicing with those
07:47 who rejoice. So this can be used in many,
07:51 many instances in just everyday life actually. But Nancy if you
07:57 all wouldn't mind taking this on as a role playing exercise. You
08:02 mentioned to me earlier that you had had a certain situation at
08:07 school that actually you felt like your life could be in
08:11 danger or you were threatened. Could you just share that a
08:15 little bit and then what I'd like you to do is after you
08:19 explain that then I'd like to see y'all role play. Or maybe
08:23 just share it with him like you're role playing now and
08:26 let you walk her through how she felt during this particular
08:31 incident. Okay. I had this really scary
08:39 encounter that happened at work today and I'm really feeling
08:43 stressed out about it.
08:45 Okay it was a bad situation that happened at work and it was
08:49 scary for you? Yes it was. It had to do with
08:53 this little boy that came in and the teacher actually referred
08:58 him to my office. He had these slap marks right on his cheek.
09:03 I mean it was very obvious finger prints and he actually
09:06 when the teacher asked him what happened he said his mother had
09:09 slapped him in the face. So they sent him right down, of course,
09:13 to the nurse's office and I verified yeah there were
09:15 definitely marks there.
09:16 Okay, so you're saying the teacher brought him in and these
09:20 red marks were still on the side of his cheek. Is that correct?
09:25 Yes, you could still see the fingerprint marks. So we had to
09:31 I had to do a CPS referral and they're supposed to assure that
09:38 they don't release information and that kind of thing. I've
09:43 never had a problem with it before and I gave my name and
09:49 explained the situation.
09:51 So you weren't really feeling fearful at this point?
09:53 No, no, it was just part of my responsibility as the school
09:58 nurse to reply to that. Yeah. It wasn't a problem. It was a
10:02 couple of days later though that the father of this child came in
10:08 It was at lunch time and I was in my office and I didn't have
10:14 any kids in the office and the hall door was open and he just
10:20 walked in. He didn't go in through the main part of the
10:24 office, he just walked into my office and he started yelling at
10:26 me and walking right up and getting right in my face and
10:31 shaking his hand and he was furious, he was angry. He had a
10:35 German accent and it was a little bit difficult for me to
10:40 understand his words. So I was feeling really very threatened
10:45 and wasn't sure just exactly what to do and was trying to
10:50 back out of the office because the other door in my office
10:55 opened into the main receptionist area and the suite
10:59 where the principal was and other staff.
11:02 Did you connect the two situations together already as
11:04 soon as you saw him that he was the father of the boy that you'd
11:08 reported? Not at first. At first I didn't
11:10 realize he was his dad but as he got talking more and more then
11:14 I realized oh this is his father and you know somehow he's
11:19 figured out that I was involved in this call and he was very
11:24 upset because we were questioning his parental
11:28 authority and that he disciplines his child and he
11:32 loves his children, he would never hurt them and that this
11:36 was completely inappropriate for us to be doing this and so
11:39 forth. So did you just have some like
11:41 immediate anxious tense type feelings come up?
11:46 Well yeah. At that time he was physically invading my area and
11:52 I just felt kind of paralyzed. I didn't know what to do and I
11:55 was just trying to back out so that I could get into a place
11:58 where there were other people. I just felt like if there were
12:02 other people around then he wouldn't be able to... I wasn't
12:06 sure that he wouldn't even just hit me in the face or you know
12:09 try to do something physical.
12:11 So you were in an enclosed area to begin with. That's what made
12:16 you really nervous about the situation.
12:18 Yeah there was no one else around.
12:20 As you quickly thought about it you were looking for an escape
12:24 plan. Yeah I was. But as it turned out
12:30 he finally calmed down and I tried to just confirm that I
12:35 knew that his best interest was for his children and that he
12:41 really didn't want to do anything that would be harmful
12:46 and just tried to talk to him in a calm manner. He finally
12:50 de-escalated and then eventually he left the office.
12:54 So how are you feeling about that right now? Like you just
12:59 went through this today you're saying and that talking to me
13:03 tonight about this situation. How are you feeling right now?
13:10 Well, I still feel emotionally kind of shaken up about the
13:16 experience but I do want to think about ways that I can
13:23 minimize this kind of negative behavior. I think that CPS has
13:29 some sort of responsibility, but on the other hand it's pretty
13:36 easy to assume if you're children don't have a lot of
13:39 contact with other people that it must be somebody at school
13:42 and the school nurse would be a likely candidate. So it may be
13:44 something that I'll have to deal within the future as well.
13:47 So you were just trying to think about what you could get
13:50 out of it to benefit, any kind of good that you can learn from
13:53 it or something like that. Is that what you're saying?
13:55 Well I don't know. I guess seeing it on the positive light,
14:02 yes. It's not going to deter me from doing what I need to do
14:07 on behalf of the child because even though it's intimidating
14:11 for me I have to make sure that the child's interest is...
14:16 I mean who knows what's going on in that family.
14:19 So what you're doing here in this role playing. I thought it
14:25 might be a little bit more obvious than that but I noticed
14:30 a number of times as she was beginning to tell you about the
14:34 events of the day, then you paraphrased, summed it up to let
14:39 her know that you really were listening and how did that make
14:43 you feel as a wife when you did come home and tell him this?
14:47 Well it was very helpful because it was really a very
14:52 upsetting experience. So to have him thoroughly listen, draw me
14:57 out, allow me to talk about it, allow me to share as long as I
15:02 needed to. It was very helpful.
15:05 I noticed as you were role playing you didn't make any
15:08 blocking statements like oh well you knew you were in a safe
15:12 environment, they had to come through, he couldn't have
15:15 carried a weapon onto school, or you were within shouting
15:19 distance. You didn't do anything to minimize that, so that was
15:24 very good. And I also noticed that you began to draw out her
15:28 feelings by asking questions, you know, how did that make you
15:31 feel. So you're saying this, you were saying that, and you were
15:35 trying to get at a deeper level. I appreciated what you did there
15:39 about... You took it almost from something being negative, so you
15:44 see this as a learning experience, and you took it, you
15:47 kind of put a positive twist on it. I think that was very
15:52 helpful to see. You know you said at first people would know
15:56 that you're practicing but I could see where I would
16:01 appreciate a conversation like this even though you all teach
16:05 this together. You're not thinking well he's practicing on me.
16:09 Yeah after you do this for a while it becomes a part of you.
16:14 He's letting me speak this and not have to stuff or suppress
16:19 the feelings that I have. That's really excellent
16:21 You know another reason that I think we do the blocking is
16:26 because we're scared about the situation. I mean, I could be
16:30 scared that something bad was going to happen to my wife and
16:34 so I can start saying things that aren't helpful to her at
16:37 all. I could say well why didn't you do this and why didn't you
16:39 do that. Well you knew the principal was going to be back
16:42 any minute so you should be... You know and that's just
16:47 covering up my fears and not knowing what to do, but here I
16:51 don't have to do that. I can see just by helping her work this
16:55 through this. She going to feel better and I'm going to feel
16:58 better and it's nice when you wife feels better because then
17:01 things go better.
17:03 That's true, that's true. Excellent. Okay, if mama ain't
17:07 happy nobody's happy is an old saying. But there was a time
17:10 when you were playing Tim the Tool Man and she didn't want you
17:14 to play Tim the Tool Man. Now let me set this up real quickly.
17:17 Basically you've got a house that had a little powder room
17:21 in the hall. You wanted to put in a shower. She didn't want it.
17:25 Esthetically she didn't think it looked good but you're thinking
17:30 very utilitarian, pragmatic. Something interesting happened.
17:35 He went ahead and did something you flat said don't do this
17:39 shower. He did do it. You're in the other room. You've told him
17:43 if you do this there's going to be a big mess. You're not
17:46 qualified to do this and you know that there's a flood in the
17:50 other room. You've already given him you bottom line. You didn't
17:54 want this shower and now he's gone ahead, cut through the wall
17:57 cut through the main line and you're sitting there thinking
18:01 what? I just could not hardly keep my
18:07 composure. Once he got the towels and mopped up the floor
18:13 and I thought I can't go now and interfere because he needs to
18:20 get the pipes together so we don't have a flood out in the
18:26 the whole house or whatever. But then later on I just said well
18:34 we talked about this and just couldn't hardly contain myself.
18:39 But you did. You didn't really get angry. I mean you didn't
18:45 express anger toward him.
18:48 I was angry inside but I didn't want to yell or whatever
18:52 because it doesn't... it's not productive. You know when you
18:57 have conflict you don't resolve anything. The best way to learn
19:04 is by experience and sometimes you both learn the lesson and
19:09 you may feel like you didn't have to learn it this way but
19:14 for your partner's, you husband's benefit or for your
19:17 benefit you do have to learn the lesson that way.
19:20 So am I understanding you correctly that it was basically
19:24 that you had a bottom line, no shower. He had a bottom line,
19:28 we're going to do the shower. And in this instance you decided
19:32 okay he's got to learn by experience. I can't always have
19:38 my way. We're at a stalemate so he's made his own little mess
19:43 we're going to let him clean it up. There's no use of me
19:46 shouting because it was just as important to him to have a
19:49 shower and it was to you not to have a shower. So there was a
19:53 communication that was going on there and the communication was
19:57 you've got as much right and you agree to disagree and I
20:02 guess she let you clean up the mess. Oh yes.
20:05 You know part of the communication process, Shelley,
20:08 is common courtesy and courtesy in communicating says that my
20:14 needs are as important as your needs.
20:19 Let me say that and rephrase that because I think you meant
20:21 to say courtesy is saying your needs are as important as mine.
20:23 Right, that's what I wanted to say. So that our mutual
20:30 understanding or our relationship will benefit by
20:33 my having the mutual respect and that your needs and my needs can
20:39 be met and we're going to work this out until we get it solved.
20:45 And even though you have a different opinion, a different
20:49 way of reacting, a different pathway to take to solve the
20:53 problem at the end it will work out.
20:57 So this was kind of a milestone for you all wasn't it not to sit
21:02 and really argue it out and haggle over these things and I
21:06 understand, Nancy, tell me if this is true. A little birdie
21:10 told me that esthetically it turned out to look pretty good.
21:14 It did look much nicer than I thought it was going to look.
21:17 You can still get in the bathroom and you can shut the
21:23 door and you can wash your hands It turned out very nice.
21:28 Did Tim the Tool Man say arrrg? That's great. But you know I
21:32 like your point there because I think there comes a time in
21:37 every marriage if you can reach that point and I know we did
21:41 early on. I used to pray before we got married. I said Oh Lord
21:45 make me a scriptural wife. I prayed so hard for that. I also
21:51 prayed when we first got married and said Lord pleeez put a
21:55 bridle on my tongue. Put a guard at the door post of my mouth.
22:00 I remember there were a few times where, especially when
22:04 you're newlyweds, that something would come up and I would think
22:08 no we've discussed it all the way through and he was bent on
22:12 doing something and you just have to say well okay. I'm
22:17 supposed to be the submissive wife there, he's supposed to be
22:20 the tie breaker. He'd go do something and it would be
22:21 exactly what I said and you're so tempted to say I told you so.
22:25 And you just had to put that guard at the doorpost of your
22:30 mouth. Let him learn by experience. I'm sure he's done
22:35 that with me. But the interesting thing is even though
22:40 we didn't argue over it and we didn't really discuss it much
22:45 I found out years later he knew all, he knew what I was keeping
22:50 back. You know he appreciated those things. So that's part of
22:54 communication is letting someone else be who they are as well.
22:58 I appreciated that too. She could have got me as soon as
23:01 that pipe broke and water went all over the place she could
23:04 have come in here and really given me a lecture. I told you
23:08 this was going to happen and you went ahead anyway. You just had
23:10 to have your way didn't you. I mean you know we could have got
23:14 into that. When our relationship is cemented prior to that and
23:18 like she was saying we've had the experience before. We know
23:21 when we come to these kinds of situations there's no use
23:25 letting them go in that negative direction. It's not going to be
23:28 productive for either.
23:30 Yeah, yeah, that's good, that's good. Now give us, we only have
23:34 just a few minutes left. In my mind I'm thinking can you do
23:38 like a parent/child role play real quick and show how a
23:41 parent might handle a child that's having a problem.
23:44 Okay. What was the idea of you crawling out of your window last
23:52 night and not coming back till 2 o'clock in the morning.
23:55 Well you know don't worry about it, Dad. It wasn't a big deal.
23:59 Me and my friend, we just wanted to go out and we were
24:03 just take a walk and it was a moon light night and there's
24:07 some of us going to get together and I knew you wouldn't give me
24:09 permission so I just... So you just went ahead anyway.
24:12 Is that it? Yeah, yeah, I did. I went anyway
24:14 Well listen, I don't approve of that at all and from now on
24:17 you're grounded for the next month.
24:19 Well that's not fair. How can you ground me? We didn't do
24:22 anything. I was with my friends. They can be a witness.
24:25 You were the one that made the choice. You went out. Now you've
24:28 got to pay for it.
24:30 All right, now. Let's take it and use really good
24:32 communication skills on this. show us how it would be
24:34 different. All righty.
24:36 All right. I noticed last night that you've been gone out
24:38 of your bedroom window and didn't come back till 2 in the
24:41 morning and I was wondering what was going on. Can you share
24:44 that with me? Well it was a moonlit night,
24:49 a full moon last night, and we just wanted to go out. It's
24:52 beautiful weather and we just wanted to go out. Two of my
24:56 girlfriends were just going to go out for walk, going to hang
25:01 out and talk and, you know, just have some freedom, no big deal.
25:06 So you went out knowing that I don't approve of it and that's
25:09 why you went out the window because you know I wouldn't give
25:13 you permission. Is that correct?
25:14 Well, yes. I knew you wouldn't let me go. I knew you wouldn't
25:17 give me permission so I had to crawl out the window.
25:20 So in spending time with your friends you really enjoyed that.
25:23 But let me as you this question. How do you feel about our
25:26 relationship and you're going out of the window? How do you feel
25:30 that's affecting our relationship?
25:33 Well I do feel guilty because I was like I knew that I shouldn't
25:39 be doing this so I did feel kind of guilty when I was doing it.
25:43 I felt bad and I really didn't enjoy the experience with my
25:47 friends as much as I would have otherwise.
25:50 Okay. So give me your understanding of what should be
25:55 done about this.
25:56 Well I think that probably I need to check with you and ask
26:02 let you know what we wanted to do and I do believe that you
26:10 love me and you want my best interest. And if you can
26:12 understand how important it is for me to be with my friends
26:15 that maybe we can... Work something out so that you
26:18 can be with your friends and you won't have to go out the window.
26:21 Okay, well that sounds good to me.
26:22 Boy are you a lenient parent. You're grounded young lady!
26:27 You but I would say too we need to talk about this a little more
26:32 Talk about this a little more. Well but I can see that it's
26:36 something that instead of putting a child on the defense
26:40 and making them think you're not really listening to me. If
26:43 you start drawing out what's important. You know they say
26:47 kids really do want boundaries so lot of times that just
26:50 showing that kind of interest. You know what? Our time is
26:54 already all gone. I want to thank you so much for coming.
26:58 Thank you for sharing all of these wonderful things about
27:02 communicating and we hope you'll come back and see us again.
27:06 Our guests today have been Duane and Nancy Andersen and they've
27:12 been teaching us to do active listening to really be able to
27:17 repeat and paraphrase the main points of someone else's
27:20 conversation to learn how to use questions that actually get
27:26 somebody going into a deeper level. Not to use blocking
27:31 statements but to develop a closer relationship through more
27:34 effective communication. I hope you've enjoyed this. It's been
27:38 fun for us here. I hope you learned something. I know I have
27:42 So for those of you at home we just pray that the grace of our
27:45 Lord Jesus Christ, the love of the Father and the fellowship
27:49 of the Holy Spirit will be with you today and always.
27:52 Thanks for joining us.


Revised 2015-09-10