“You’re just not LISTENING to me.” OUCH. If you’re married, chances are, you’ve heard this statement before. But, when you read it just now, how did you hear that in your head?Was this statement said with…Anger? Frustration? Contempt? Hopelessness? Kindness?
Perhaps you heard it the way it’s been said to you before. Or maybe, you even heard it in the tone that you yourself would say it…or maybe have said it in.
Either way, we all know it’s not often WHAT we say, but HOW we say it, that matters most, especially to those we love most.
Research shows that, in fact, non-verbal communication (the actions, movement, tones, inflections of voice & etc) that accompany our words is far more impactful than the words themselves.
Wow. I am going to pause there for a moment. That is profound to me. That would mean that the way in which we say it means 10000% more than the actual words coming out of our mouths. It really makes a large statement about how we should actively pursue conversations with our loved ones.
Time for some self reflection.
As of right now, in what ways do you communicate your thoughts & feelings to your spouse?
Do you wait until the last minute, and then you’re bursting out in anger, fear or tears?
Do you pretend things aren’t bothering you and push things under the rug so that you don’t “rock the boat?”
Or do you collect your thoughts & approach your spouse in an appropriate time to get some real good conversations going?
There is no wrong answer. These are all realistic and honest responses. What matters most is how we choose to navigate our conversations forward. I don’t know about your marriage – but ours didn’t come with a handbook.
Sometimes, it’s difficult to figure these things out. Sometimes, it’s very revealing and eye opening to see how we conduct ourselves in certain situations.
It’s Not Me, It’s You
And other times, it isn’t even ourselves that makes the mistake in communication, but our spouse. In these moments, where we can’t change how they said what’s on their mind or heart, we CAN choose how we react to it.
Take a moment, to take a breath, and really aim to hear and listen to the words your spouse is saying – no matter the tone behind it. Imagine what it is they’re aiming to communicate with those words.
Your spouse bringing up challenging things that is on their heart is a GOOD sign. It shows that they care enough to be open and want to seek to communicate with you or repair what is broken or damaged.
So, what’s next?
The next time you find yourself with your spouse with an opportunity for good, healthy communication, be sure to be mindful of your tone, inflections and body language. Change things up a bit. Take a breath, before you respond to something they said or did. Choose a different time or moment than you normally would for deeper communication. You could always practice what you want to say to your spouse in the mirror.
In this way, you can watch your own facial expressions and body language. For instance, you want to make sure you don’t have RBF (Resting Bitch Face) or a scowl when you’re talking with your spouse about your sex life or plans for your anniversary. A simple change of expression or open body language can make a huge difference into how your message will be perceived – and therefore, perceived.
In marriage, all your conversations matter. It’s not just about this one, but all the ones after. Where it’s important to have all the conversations, it’s not important to have them all right now.
Come rekindle the fire and ignite romance back in your marriage with our 3 Day Marriage Challenge here: https://view.flodesk.com/pages/6132327ed0d5896caac600f2
Practice, Practice, Practice.
Practice these things from this article and watch your intimacy grow and flourish over time. Healthy habits are like a muscle, you gotta work them, flex them, and use them continually over time to see genuine growth.
We believe in you. You’ve got this.
-Kim & Cheyanne