Many years ago while I was in this relationship building class with Francy I had an experience that sticks to me up until this day.
So the practice is to ‘listen’.
Listening is different with hearing.
You helplessly hear everything that make noises around you, but you selectively listen to anything you want to pay attention to.
The most interesting thing in the exercise, was when you listen, you had to keep your mouth shut.
We sat facing each other, then I needed to listen Francy’s complaints about me, and I need to shut up and let her finish.
I thought this was going to be easy. But apparently it was really NOT. *huge grin*
Everytime she said “You are this, and that, and you did this, and I feel that” I was like a tiger wanting to pounce in every time she was taking her breath between sentences.
I think I opened my mouth a couple of times.
It took a deliberate, focused restrain to keep me from talking back. And I think that was the first time I really feel and understand how to shut up.
Because most of the time we argue back, we present our case, we defend ourselves.
We never let the other guy finish, and really-really listen.
If you cannot understand what I am saying right now, try the exercise yourself.
Sit across your lifepartner, and ask her what he/she dislike about you. And you have to shut up the whole time.
I bet, you will feel this kick in your belly all the while you are grinding your teeth trying to keep words from coming out of your mouth 😀
It was a very valuable exercise, because after that, I know how to shut up. 😀
I did not master this ancient art right away, but it (the exercise) helped me a lot.
And when you can start listening, your relationship will improve tremendously.
Maybe, you guys will really open up for the first time in the many years you guys have been dating/married.
So, try it.
Instead of sitting next to each other reading your Facebook timelines, try this instead.
I hope you will experience a breakthrough, and you relationship goes up a level.
PS: As a matter of fact, I would love to hear from you if you have tried the exercise. Will you write about what how you feel to firstname.lastname@example.org ? I will share it anonymously in the next newsletter if you allow me to.
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