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Learn How To Communicate With Your Spouse
Learning how to communicate with your spouse is crucial to your marriage success. This isn’t a skill that you are taught in school or that seems to come naturally. In fact, part of your makeup as a human is to talk with them in ways that are not helpful. As humans, we tend to lean away from pain and hurt. Talking with your spouse in the right way requires that you lean into pain and hurt. It’s vulnerable to open up and share and you expose yourself to potential pain.
So, let’s talk about how to communicate with your spouse in a way that fixes problems and brings you closer.
Communicate With Spouse – Know The Difference Between Your Thoughts And Emotions
A big aspect of healthy communication between you and your spouse is knowing the difference between your thoughts and emotions. Most people get this wrong. What you think is not what you feel and what you feel is not what you think (Related Article: Emotions 101: How To Be Healthy).
Your thoughts consist of what’s in your head. Including your interpretation of things, your wonderings or reasonings. Whereas your emotions are in your heart. They can include feeling sad, hurt or happy. For example, you might feel hurt if your spouse forgets your anniversary, and you might think that they don’t care about you. Those are two different things.
Communication With Spouse – Learn How To Listen
Listening is an active part of a healthy marriage. Listening is more than just hearing the words your spouse is saying. It involves reflecting, validating, asking, wondering, giving space and making it safe to talk. Being a good listener helps your spouse feel heard and understood even if you don’t agree with them. You don’t have to agree to validate and listen.
For example, when your spouse tells you about their day at work with difficult customers you could listen. Instead of saying, ‘That’s what you signed up for when you went into customer service’, try saying, ‘That must be frustrating. What happened?’. You could also say, ‘I know you are working really hard to do well. To have that customer act that way must be discouraging’. Your spouse will feel heard and more understood. They will feel emotionally safe (Related Article: What Is Emotional Safety In A Relationship?).