Listen Up!

I want to give you some practical ways to improve your relationship. Let’s start with listening. In order to be a better listener one must incorporate a desire to understand. Many people listen in order to find something to disagree with. You’ll hear a lot of “yeah but” or “I understand but”. Whatever follows “but” is disagreement. Instead, try listening to understand. Keep in mind that understanding does not equal agreement. Understanding means it makes sense to you. That’s a good line to remember-“It makes sense to me that you would feel that way”. Think of it as stepping into the other person’s reality, their model of the world. When someone feels understood there is a connection. There is that feeling of “you get me” that draws people closer.

Spending time together is obviously a crucial component of a happy and satisfying relationship. The time you spend with your significant other should be meaningful and as much as possible be fun. You didn’t get together and stay together without fun. Think about those things you did together when you were first dating. Did you have something you did together that you no longer do? One great thing to do together is to discover new things. Plan some time together when you go somewhere you’ve never been before and try something you’ve never tried before. Many couples like to go to a suburb or a part of the city they’ve never been to and go to a restaurant they’ve never been to. Go to Andersonville and eat at an Ethiopian restaurant. Head to Wheaton and eat at a café’. Go to the Polish-American museum. See what you can discover together and hopefully discover a new and better relationship.