Two words that have been misused in the English language are listening and hearing. Especially among married couples.The Merriam –Webster Dictionary defines listening as - to hear something with thoughtful attention: give consideration. While hearing is defines as - the process, function, or power of perceiving sound; specifically: the special sense by which noises and tones are received as stimuli. One of the chief complaint from clients is “my spouse is not listening to me.” What does that mean? And why is it so difficult for couples to listen to each other?
Married couples do hear each other, but so many couples fail to listen to each other. When listening does not occur in a marriage, a spouse is more likely to start making self-defensive talk and rebuttal. In addition, most couples who struggle with listening see understanding as agreeing. As a result, the communication is filled with faulty messages. How do couples stop this unhealthy pattern?
To increase listening in your marriage, you have to stop the self-rebuttal when you are listening to your spouse. Understanding your spouse is not necessarily agreeing with his/her point of view. Understanding your spouse means that you are a responsible listener, and you are conveying empathy. As a responsible listener, you give your undivided attention by being emotionally available in the conversation. By doing more listening you will reach agreement.
Listening can be a difficult skill to acquire if it is not practice. To increase your listening skill, take the first step and pay full attention to your spouse. Do not allow your mind to be entangled in self-rebuttal.
A good listener makes his/her spouse feel loved, respected and valuable.
Questions: What listening tips have you used to increase intimacy in your relationship?
Thank you for reading. To grow your relationship, please visit us at http://www.portofpeacecounseling.com