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5 Reasons We Talk “At” Each Other and How to Listen

5 Reasons We Talk “At” Each Other and How to Listen

  1. It’s easy to assume you know what your partner is going to say.  After all, you’ve been together for years and we can get repetitive with one another.  But maybe, just maybe, you don’t know what they are thinking.
  2. You’re thinking about what you’re going to say, and can barely wait for them to stop talking.  As your partner is talking to you, you are busy formulating a response, a defense, something that will prove them wrong.  You can’t wait to make your point.
  3. You’re responding to their “tone” and stop listening to their words.  We can grow very sensitive to how someone is talking to us, and that makes it easy to have an emotional reaction.  The actual message of what they’re trying to convey to us is lost.
  4. You’re distracted by something else.  If you’re really listening to someone, you’re looking at them in the eyes, or jotting down what they’re saying.  Listening is an active activity.
  5. You can misread your partner’s motive or intent.  YOu can believe that your partner has an ulterior motive behind what they’re saying. Often, this occurs due to earlier conflict. You still think your partner is making a point, or getting a punch in.

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