If a person wants to communicate with someone the only way to do that effectively is to understand them. To be an effective communicator you have to be a good listener you have to understand their world from their perspective. If you don’t do this you are putting your frame of reference on their words, this process changes the meaning of their words and this disconnects trust between them and you.
Many couples fight about what was said or not said, in the moment they are translating each others words through a filter of fear (BTW anger is a fear response) and so this changes what they thought the other person said, or the meaning behind their partners words.
The more couples go round in circles not understanding each other the faster they shut down into a transactional relationship as an emotional connection is not safe for either person.
The moment the relationship becomes transactional the relationship is dying and it’s only a matter of time before someone decides to make an upsetting change.
Being understood is critical because without it a person cannot share their thoughts and feelings honestly with their partner. Not being understood by their partner will block a person from going to their partner for help and advice.
So to become an effective communicator the skill of listening has to change. Most people are focused on waiting to reply or focused on the words they will use to reply to their partner or loved one instead of being focused on understanding the true meaning behind their partners words.
So as they are waiting to speak the words being spoken to them are being filtered through their own life experiences as they head towards a meaning that makes sense to them. By doing this they are totally unaware they are changing the true meaning of their partners words. As the meaning changes through their own filtering process they will instantly make their partner responsible for their new translation.
When someone does this to an other persons words and they make them responsible for a meaning they didn’t create instantly the trust dies and the person will move to protect themselves.
You see, you cannot project your own life onto someones words. You can never know what they are really feeling from your own experiences you have to know from theirs.
So the real skill of communicating is not just in what you say it’s in how to listen to your partner, your children, your friends and family. If you listen with empathy and with a quest to learn their true meaning(s) only then will they really trust you with their deepest thoughts.
So if a loved one has shut down on you or is constantly upset with you, or you go round in circles this is a symptom of not being understood.
One of the most attractive qualities a human can posses is the desire to truly want to and seek to understand another person.
It’s the process and desire to learn about our partners and loved ones that truly connects us. Without doubt communication is one of the key skills that when mastered can transform relationships very quickly.
So how can a woman listen to a man and learn to understand him if she has never been a man? How can a man listen to a woman and really understand her if he has never been a woman?
These are the challenges that couples work on with me every day and you can too. Learning about your partner is easy when you know how and is so rewarding when you reconnect with each other.