Research has shown that people who listen make you feel more significant as a person. The effect also lasts after you have left their presence. It is so easy to have a positive impact even if you don’t know what questions to ask. In the context of marriage when your spouse leaves your presence after being listened to they feel boosted. They feel significant, they feel a great sense of worth and they feel more secure.
Have you heard of “The Five Love Languages”, by Dr. Gary Chapman? As I counsel couples I have found that couples benefit from understanding two key concepts. First of all, you have a love tank. Secondly, you fill love tanks by using the five love languages. Give thought to what your love languages are and what the love languages are of your loved ones. Doing so has the power to dramatically improve the quality of your relationships.
Do you know what your conflict handling style is and when it is best to use it? We all differ in how we handle conflict and tend to favour one style in particular. Competing, accommodating, avoiding, collaborating and compromising are all useful in certain situations and destructive in others. For example, competing is effective when quick, decisive action is needed but if used inappropriately it can result in reduced communication, damaged relationships and low levels of commitment from the other person.
As I counsel couples I see that a lot of people today feel insecure in their marriages. Make it your goal this month to proactively fill your spouse’s love tank and to do things that increase the sense of security in your marriage. You will be amazed how they become the best version of themselves simply because they feel safe.