Be a Loving Listener

Listening to another person for any length of time is not easy. If we are honest, most of us will admit that we’d rather be listened to and understood than to listen to our mates. Here are some tips to help you and your mate become loving listeners and deepen your sense of connection.

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Unplug The Argument

Ever notice how just one word can inflame an argument? Conflict can get out of hand quickly. Depending on how much emotional reserves you have in your tank, small issues can escalate into major ruptures of relationship. Here’s some tips for de-escalating a heating conversation.

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Grow Your Spiritual Connection

Learning to pray together as a couple will enhance your spiritual intimacy. Praying together joins your hearts and invites God into the daily challenges you face. Acknowledging your shortcomings through prayer can soften your heart toward each other and enable you to offer forgiveness more quickly. Praying for family members, work pressures, and life’s challenges can help you trust God in a deeper way as you see Him at work in your life.

Praying together consistently keeps your relationship focused on what is eternally important. There is no need to impress your spouse with your words as you pray. Keep it simple and sincere. Find out other ways to grow your spiritual connection.

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Learn to Forgive

When our mate wounds us, we can be tempted to think they owe us something. An apology would be nice and a guarantee to never do it again even would be even better. When we are hurt, it is natural to want to protect ourselves from further pain. We tend to withhold forgiveness until we feel that the other person has sufficiently paid for their offense. We self protect by keeping our barriers up in order to avoid future hurt.
Withholding forgiveness suggests that we are blind to our own imperfections and hurtful ways. On the contrary, when we see our faults clearly, we have a better vantage point to see our mate’s flaws. When we show a willingness to extend forgiveness, our spouse will likely be more forthright about their responsibility in hurting us.

How do we go about forgiving our mate in a way that releases them from debt and paves the way for restoring the relationship?

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Learn The Practice of Apologizing

Being right feels a lot better than being wrong. We all like to be right! Growing up, we probably learned to equate being wrong with punishment or receiving less of a parent’s affection. As a defense mechanism, we all learn how to defend ourselves and justify our behavior.

The fact is, we all make mistakes. Learning how to apologize well is a powerful tool that can restore a marriage. Find out the ingredients of an effective, heartfelt apology.

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Learn The Art of Healthy Compromise

For some, compromise seems like the slippery slope to losing one’s voice. It feels like a way of diminishing individuality and freedom of choice. But the truth is, all strong, long lasting marriages have a hearty amount of compromise.
If a couple is ever to enjoy true intimacy, some form of compromise is vital! In every good marriage, each spouse needs to learn to bend, and sometimes give up his or her own desires for the sake of marital growth. How can you begin to effectively work toward a mutually satisfying compromise?

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Transforming hearts ... one life at a time