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Walking in their world

June 22, 2011

A Great Idea…

“Any attempt to talk about [a problem] while you [and your partner] are disconnected will make it worse. The trick to achieving the kind of connection you want is to develop the advanced relationship skill of binocular vision, the artful ability to see your partner’s perspective as well as your own.” (Marriage experts, Patricia Love and Steven Stosny, in their book, How to Improve Your Marriage Without Talking About It, p. 124)

In Other Words…

Most of us fight poorly. We push harder and argue louder for our own positions. We all know the results: we and our partners end up angry and disconnected.

There is a better way. At the first hint of a disagreement, we can step out of our own positions and walk around in our partners’ worlds. We can work to understand their points-of-view. When we do, we get better ideas for solutions because we understand their points better. In addition, taking time to understand opens up our partner to more collaboration.

How This Applies to You…

The next time you face a problem in your relationship, try setting aside your views and arguments. Look at your partner. Make a real effort to understand his or her point of view. Think about what your partner is arguing for. Why is it important to him or her? One key to solving problems is understanding your partner’s point of view.

To Find Out More…

For an excellent (and free!) program on marriage, see The Marriage Garden at Arkansas Families (arfamilies.org).

For more in-depth reading, we recommend How to Improve Your Marriage Without Talking about It by Patricia Love and Steven Stosny or The Marriage Garden by H. Wallace Goddard and James P. Marshall.

 

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