They say that the key to a good relationship is communication with each other.
That is completely true.
But there is another aspect that is equally as important when you are trying to cultivate a better marriage with your partner.
It is important to be able to listen in marriage as well.
Being a "good listener" does not always exactly mean that you are truly hearing what your partner is saying.
When we truly open up to our spouses and listen with open ears and an open heart, amazing things can happen.
When we slow down from our everyday hustle-and-bustle of life and truly sit down with our partners and make them feel heard, you will be pleasantly surprised at how much you and your partner become closer to each other when you listen in marriage.
When your spouse needs to talk to you about something, they may be a little emotional or nervous about it, which can sometimes send us into a tizzy when we aren't sure what its about.
But its important to take a deep breath, sit back, and allow your partner to speak, fully and openly to you.
To listen in marriage and make it effective, make sure that they know that they have your full attention.
Making eye contact is a great place to start.
Take the time to turn off or turn down your devices to show them that they have the floor and you are ready to listen to what they have to say.
A little gesture like this could mean the absolute world to your partner, knowing that you truly listen in marriage.
Take the time to fully unwind for a few moments, and give your undivided attention to your partner.
When you both listen with empathy to each other, you are giving each other a glimpse into what it is like to be in each other's shoes.
It gives you a look into their day, and why they may be feeling how they are.
Always listen with an open heart, and allow yourself to imagine what your spouse is feeling.
When you listen with empathy, you are also able to validate your partner's feelings, making them feel more safe and secure.
For example, if your spouse comes home and needs to vent about what happened that day, instead of automatically tuning them out, like many of us often do, become engaged and listen to them wholeheartedly.
Even just venting like that and knowing that the other person is listening can make your partner feel loved.
At the end of the day, that is what we are all looking for, is to feel loved.
So, make sure that your partner knows that they are loved, even before going into the conversation.
It should also go the same way for you, your partner should also make you feel the same way in order for an even conversation.
When couples get into arguments, it's often because one or both partners begin throwing in all the issues that they have into the conversation, and it takes a turn for the worse.
When sitting down and getting ready to talk to each other, you should both agree that you will both only tackle one problem at a time.
When you focus on one topic at a time, neither of you will get carried away with other things that you may be wanting to talk to your partner about.
Make sure that you each have a turn at speaking and speaking on the same issue.
Once you have successfully resolved one issue, then you can move on to the next issue, or take a break from the heavy talk for the moment and just sit and be with each other, present in that moment.
There are many ways that you can become a better listener to your spouse or partner.
These are just a few ways that you can do that.
Remember, the most important way to listen is with your heart open.
Allow yourself to sit in your spouse's shoes for a few moments.
Empathy is an endless resource that goes a long way, especially within a marriage.
When you listen in marriage, you are creating a safe space for your partner. If you are ready to speak to a marriage counselor, we can help. Please call (800) 498-8043, and we will assist you in finding the right counselor for you and your partner.
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