I struggled with this one for years, and years and years.
Me: “I understand you.”
Wife: “No you don’t.”
Me: “Yes, I do, I heard everything you said and I get it.”
Wife: “Your’e not listening.”
Me: “Yes I am.”
Wife: “Well, I still don’t feel understood.”
This went on and on for years…
Then, I decided to figure it out and find a new way.
And once I figured it out, and learned to do it well, something in her would unlock.
She become more available.
And guess who “taught” me how to do this?
It was only through my direct experience with her, and really listening to her, that I finally got it.
Okay, so, do what did I learn? What’s the big secret?
That’s right. Validation is the key to softening a woman’s heart.
So, if men, if we want to avoid more fighting and get connected a whole lot sooner, while saving time, here’s a simple starter video that gives a good picture of what we’re screwing up, and what to do instead.
Men in particular struggle with this one—and yes, it applies to both genders.
As a marriage coach, this is one of the most common relationship challenges I see. Both parties struggle to truly listen to each other, understand each other, and then validate the other person’s experience.
There’s a whole bunch of reasons why most of us struggle with this one, but most of us never got any real training in the art of listening and understanding someone.
By the way, just because I validate my wife’s experience, doesn’t mean it’s right. She can be way off, and it doesn’t matter. The point isn’t about being “right,” it’s about understanding what it’s like to be her.
Once we do this, most people relax and stop defending because they feel seen and understood, like their perspective matters.
When my wife and I both agree that I understand her, we can move to understanding me. It’s my turn. I want to be heard and validated in my experience too.
In my marriage, we both go for win, win, or no deal (one of the 10 agreements of an indestructible marriage).
Take notes on this video, write down each “skill” and practice with our partner. See how it goes and report back.
Love elephant and want to go steady?
Author: Jayson Gaddis
Editor: Ashleigh Hitchcock