Have you and your partner been getting into more and more frequent arguments? Do you often find yourself thinking of how to be a better listener and partner? It’s fairly common to forget to take a moment to reflect upon what is being said and focus on the effective listening bit when we engage in conversations.
This can sometimes get frustrating, especially if your partner refuses to listen to your thoughts, ideas, or share theirs, which is vital to care for all the different types of intimacy. The trick to being fully present in a nurturing, loving, and caring relationship is to be open to listening to what your partner has to say to you. Not only can this help clarify any misunderstandings or miscommunication within the relationship, but it can also make you a better partner and help you cultivate a space of openness, kindness, and empathy in your relationship.
Oftentimes in our everyday lives, we tend to get so caught up in our own schedules that we fail to pause for a second, take a step back, and think about what our partner has said to us. This is where most common spats start. To resolve those, you’re going to need to open your heart up, put aside resentment or anger, and really hear your partner out. If you’re hoping to learn how to be a better listener, we at V for Vibes have a few tips and tricks to help you understand the steps to effective listening!
Keep your Heart and Mind Open
When you and your partner sit down to communicate, or when they come to you with a problem or suggestion, learn to keep your heart and mind open. This essentially means listening without judgment and listening because you want to hear them out. Not only does this help your partner fully articulate what they’re saying, but it also helps you understand their point of view better.
It may be tempting to stick to the narrative in your head about a particular situation that could potentially upset the two of you. Try to drown the urge to settle for assumptions by opening your heart and mind up to the idea of truly connecting with your partner by being present and effectively listening to them.
Your partner might come to you with completely new ideas and suggestions, such as the desire to experiment with sex toys and sexual kinks, and keeping your heart and mind open will allow you to understand and process what they’re telling you. Keep any biases at bay by telling yourself that this is how you show up in your relationship for your partner – this is one of the smaller steps to take while being a better partner.
Listen to Understand, not React.
When your partner chooses to talk to you with openness and clarity, you need to put aside reactions you might have to what they’re saying, as this is key in how to be a better listener.
It’s easy to slip into a loop of hearing and reacting – it’s instinctive, comes naturally, and can be a way to quickly deal with the emotions that are evoked through the conversation. If you and your partner are having a particularly challenging and difficult conversation, the nature of the conversation can turn heated easily.
Try to hold yourself back from blurting out any responses you hear repeated in arguments for effective listening, especially when engaging in sex talk. Know that these are things that your mind tells you when adrenaline rushes through your veins and that you’re the bigger person than you might have been in the past.
Be fully present, and engage whole-heartedly in the conversation your partner is trying to have with you. Listen to understand, not react, even though it might be the impulse at the moment. Not only will this let you hear your partner out, but it might also even give you time to keep your cool and respond in a mature and kind way.
Remember, listening fully and intently is at the heart of any relationship based on love, care, and support.
Learn to Empathize with your Partner
It takes a lot of courage to be open and honest about things that might be unpleasant or uncomfortable to discuss. When your partner decides to open up to you about the difficulty they’re facing, they are coming to you from a position of vulnerability and realness.
To be a kind partner and to practice effective listening, you must respect that vulnerability and learn to empathize with your partner.
Perhaps this is just as difficult for them to talk to you about as it is for you to hear it. In such situations, hurt can quickly become the only emotion that is felt, and the natural response is to react and respond instantly – to try to get the last word in. Hearing your partner out can be difficult, but it is a very important step towards cultivating openness and encouraging your partner to share their thoughts and feelings with you. This is needed for a stable, healthy, and loving relationship – without a solid foundation like this, your relationship can quickly turn sour, and moments can get heated.
Empathizing with your partner can not only make it easier for the two of you to deal with an issue, but it can also make your partner feel more important and like they are a more significant part of your life. It is a good way to reaffirm your love and commitment to your partner’s relationship; you are putting effort into how to be a better listener in a relationship, and it will pay off!
Ask Questions for Clarity!
One way of engaging honestly and openly, and with an open heart and mind, is to ask questions when you and your partner have a conversation. Listen intently, and if you find yourself confused, or want more details for clarity, feel free to ask your partner questions which they can respond to so you can understand the issue at hand. Remember that this is not just so you can respond and react to what your partner is saying – the tip about not reacting still holds, but this is more about genuinely wanting to embrace the suggestions made by your partner by clearing up any confusion you might have.
This can help you avoid arguments because of miscommunication or misunderstanding, or even when sometimes you’re unable to catch exactly what the other person is saying. Learning how to be a better listener is easy, as long as you keep these tips and tricks in your mind and are cognizant of the need to be present through the conversation.
The next thing you’re going to have to do for effective listening and for how to be a better listener in a relationship is to really try and focus on what your partner is saying to you. If they are making suggestions for you to change the way you act or behave, try to maintain your attention by putting your phone away and letting go of other distractions, just for the time period that you and your partner talk.
This shows that you are willing to be an effective listener and will help you keep your concentration, allowing you to listen more effectively and be a better listener as you will grasp more of what your partner is saying to you. It will also let you understand better. In itself, it can be very rewarding – better understanding the issue at hand is one of the first steps to resolving conflict in relationships. It makes you more equipped to respond to a difficult situation.