5 Tips to get your man to really listen to you
My husband is awesome. He's a good man, a great father and all that stuff, but dang it if he isn't a terrible listener. Sometimes when we are arguing communicating I swear it's like I am speaking in jibberish to him because he doesn't understand what I'm explaining or trying to get at and he gets frustrated with the whole process and so do I. Well, I know I'm not alone in this situation, many women have similar complaints and there is a reason for that: science has proven that men's brains are wired differently than ours. Huh.
I supposed I can't expect my hubby to rewire his whole brain just because I need him to help me make the bed every once in a while, so I guess I better find a way to speak to him that helps him truly hear and listen to what I've got to say.
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I went searching for advice and these are the five best tips I found to get your man to truly listen to you:
1. Don't force him to make eye contact. What?! I always force my husband to make eye contact. How else am I supposed to know if he is really paying attention to me? Turns out that me standing right in front of him and forcing eye contact triggers a fight or flight response in him and naturally makes him defensive. Instead it is better to sit catty-corner from him or even next to him so he doesn't feel confronted.
2. Set him up for success. Don't try to talk to him while he's on the phone, on the toilet or watching TV. This makes sense, you can't expect to have his full attention if he is watching a marathon of the The Walking Dead while talking on the phone and trying to go potty. Duh.
3. Figure it out for him. Don't expect him to connect the dots about how you feel to what he needs to do. If you tell him that you are so tired you want to cry and can't possibly do anymore dishes, don't expect him to start soaping those babies up. Straight up ask for what you want. Say, "Honey, I am beat. Could you pretty please with sugar on top do the dishes?"
4. Don't yell at him from across the house. I do this all the time. Instead of walking over to where he is and talking, I'll yell down the hallway. Not a good strategy. He says, "Sure" to whatever I say even though he probably wasn't listening. Later I get pissed because he can't remember what I yelled at him. Proximity is best when trying to communicate.
5. Get to the point. Oh my goodness, I could talk about my feelings for a good half hour before I actually get to what I want from my husband. I mean, shouldn't he know how it makes me feel when he leaves one random dirty sock by the hamper instead of in the hamper? It's like that stinky dirty sock is a metaphor for our relationship. It's saying, Yes, I used you and got you dirty, but I can't be bothered to help you go where you need to go. Before I even get to my point his brain is cluttered with images of dirty sock puppets.
It's like Maya Angelou says via Oprah's mouth all the time, "When you know better, you do better." Now that I know these tricks to get my husband to listen, I'll be better at communicating with him.
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