Here is an ongoing project for you to become a better husband:
To become the best husband possible, practice “observing” how women converse with each other.
Really listen to the flow of their conversations and how they exchange information.
Notice that they do not exchange information in the same structure as men, nor are they looking for the same responses as men desire with other men in your conversations.
Applying these subtle differences in how women transfer data can alter a marriage big time.
An effective husband continually develops his acute listening skills. Your wife will appreciate that you can tune into her heart through her discussions.
PEP PILLS for Active Listening in Your Marriage: Action Steps for a Better Marriage Relationship
This is an excerpt from my book “Cracking The Marriage Code”
# 1 – Open-ended sentences – ask a series of specific questions, and just listen to her.
Let her know your desire to find out more about her. She can speak about anything she wants to share. Ask questions related to her dreams that she has shared before. This communicates to her a desire to hear what she has to say. Learn to focus on her needs. Listen to what she wants in life. Zone in on her deep-seated needs. Keep in mind, this book is written for a husband to focus on his wife.
Questions could be something like this:
Honey, how would you finish this sentence?
“Someday I would really like to . . .”
A special vacation you would like to take would be . . .
If time and money were no object, what would you really like to do?
(If you need any other suggestions, just email me, and I will be glad to help you out.)
At first, she might be looking for the hidden agenda, so encourage her that this is no hoax; having her share her needs is paramount.
Ask some open-ended questions to get the discussion started, especially if genuine verbal communication has not been vibrant in the marriage.
#2 – The 3-minute timer –
This is a special experience she is going to enjoy.
You will listen to her in an undivided fashion for 3 minutes, where she can share anything she wants to.
It can be about her day, her friends, or whatever she wants to share. This is to become a better listener for her.
You will set a timer, and at the end of the 3 minutes, tell her what she spoke about.
Hint, just soak it up and don’t try to “memorize” her words. Reflect back to her as much as possible.
Make sure she understands that the words reflected back might be phrased a bit differently than her words.
So, if she generates a huge amount of details, squish those details down a bit, and encourage her to appreciate the verbal differences between men and women.
Be patient with her. Try to share in your response as many details as possible, especially if she is detail oriented.
Ask her if she enjoyed doing this together? If she responds in some form of “yes!” then ask her how often she would like to do it again?
The point is to meet her emotional needs in this exercise. Always focus on your wife! This practice will pay great dividends. : )
#3 – Remain available for her to express herself –
Ask her how her day went then without any interruptions; let her spill the details as she desires.
Can you listen attentively without forming any rebuttals for problems she might bring up.
Nod or make very brief comments that concern the details, nothing more.
Your wife needs your attention, not necessarily your advice.
#4 – As you stimulate conversations stay with her emotions and look at the situation through her eyes.
Work to understand her perspective in the matter under discussion.
Ask a few clarifying questions such as “Could you go back over that for me.” or “OK so I missed a point here, help me out, just what did you mean by (then restate what part you understand before getting a bit sidetracked)”
Try to avoid jumping to rapid conclusions as if it is all figured out quickly.
The purpose here is to let her share any information she desires.
#5 – Since women use conversation as an emotional connection device and men use conversation as a learning experience this Pep Pill will help you learn how to connect closer with your wife.
Ask a couple questions to bond more with her.
Help me learn about your desires, give me three specific ways I can help you around the house.
Why do you think your friendship with (insert her best friend’s name) is so tight?
How do you feel I am a good husband? (“father” also works well here)
Listen to how she expresses these ideas and incorporate some additional beliefs that are similar.
She is sharing some of her core values.