Written by Gay Hendricks, co-author of Hearts In Harmony .
Are You Making These 2 Listening Mistakes And Causing Him To Lose Desire For You?
Imagine this all-too-common scenario. You and your partner are in the car on your way to dinner. You are telling him about something that happened between you and a co-worker that day.
Your partner is keeping his eye on the road, but isn't saying much.
You're wondering what he's thinking about what you just told him.
Does he think you were wrong in the way you reacted to your co-worker?
So you ask him,
"You think I handled that ok?"
He sighs and shrugs, then replies, "Probably," without offering any further explanation.
Your mind races to what he could have found wrong in what you said.
You begin justifying your actions with the co-worker in your mind, and even start to question your judgment.
You assumed he was going to agree with you, so you find yourself feeling hurt and misunderstood because he wasn't more emphatic with his support.
But you don't say so.
In fact, you just sit there, stewing, the entire drive to the restaurant.
Your intention earlier that evening was to have a nice, romantic dinner, but the date doesn't go according to your expectations.
You feel tense throughout the meal and the conversation is stifled.
Later at home, you turn in early, claiming exhaustion, while your partner catches up on email.
You lay in bed alone, wondering where the passion and romance has gone.
You are deeply saddened by the idea that he doesn't seem to adore you as much as he used to, and doesn't desire you as much, either.
Your Partner's Silence Is Not A Sign Of Wavering Love. There's Something Else Going On.
If you've ever gotten annoyed at your partner for how long it takes him to respond, or how little he has to say, it's probably because you're not considering a critical difference between men and women.
Men and women have distinctly different styles of speaking and listening.
That's normal - most of us don't take the time to consider how our partner's communication style may be different than, or clash with ours.
It becomes a problem when you let it get in the way of expressing and feeling passion and affection for each other.
When a misunderstanding becomes resentment or anger, it actually "blocks" you from experiencing the natural flow of sexual energy between you.
In our practice, here are the two most common mistakes we see women making when it comes to the way they listen to their partner:
Mistake #1: You interpret his silence as a lack of affection.
In hunter-gatherer times, men had to be silent and focused while they observed, stalked and hunted prey.
Women, on the other hand, would go gathering in groups and it was advantageous to be talkative since the chatter scared predators away.
Men therefore evolved to speak in short bursts.
They tend to pick the least amount of words to express what they are thinking and feeling at the time.
Sometimes, they're not sure what they're feeling, and if that's the case, they won't attempt to elaborate until they can figure it out.
When your partner is being quiet, it doesn't necessarily mean that he's lost interest in you. It could mean that he's solving a problem or simply chilling out.
If you interpret that he's withdrawing his affection, you may tend to react in ways that might turn him off.
You'll withdraw in return, criticize him, or act angry or annoyed. Just like in the imaginary scenario above.
All of which does nothing to spark a passion between you.
Mistake #2: You listen to evaluate, rather than appreciate.
When women relay information, they often use rich metaphors and associations to make their point.
A woman might compliment a man's choice of new sunglasses by saying,
"When you wear those sunglasses, it makes me think you're some exotic pilot whose about to go on a secret mission, and I just feel a little thrill inside."
Men, on the other hand, tend to communicate in chunks.
He might look at you in your new, expensive dress and say, "You look nice."
Instead of appreciating him for giving you a compliment, you are disappointed that he's not more romantic or elaborate with his words.
Women assume that men ought to be able to communicate in the same rich style that women do.
This becomes a problem when we mistake those short phrases as a lack of expression of love.
We think if men aren't giving us lots of flowery sentences, they don't love us.
In fact, men are doing their best based on their natural communication style.
When you listen to your partner's words with an ear of judgment, it really makes him shrink up and not want to reach out.
He senses your tension and he clams up even more. He begins to wonder if he can ever please you.
And later, he may not initiate physical intimacy for fear that you'll turn away.
How To Let Go Of Passion-Killing Misunderstandings And Get That Sexy Energy Flowing Between You Again.
In order to get the flow of positive good feelings flowing again between you and your partner, you have to remove any blocks that are stifling that flow.
Communication is just one of five key relationship areas where flow gets blocked and causes passion to slowly wither and die.
The mistakes we mention here are just a small sample of several kinds of simple misunderstandings that can affect good communication in couples.
You don't have to let the way you speak or listen get in the way of a passionate time in the bedroom with your partner.
There need not be any resentment, bad feelings, or boredom because of something that's so easily fixed.
In our free advice newsletters and our Hearts In Harmony eBook, we address both men AND women about the most destructive mistakes they're making when it comes to speaking and listening to their partner, and we offer real-world solutions for eliminating those mistakes.
We give examples and practices that will open up the flow of communication again, and allow both of you to feel more connected and therefore more passionate with each other.
We share techniques in speaking and listening that will make him feel relaxed and confident, and wanting to ravish you with attention and affection.
Reignite The Passion Starting Today.
When you commit to a new style of communication, you open up to having more passion and increased romance with your partner.
It doesn't take long to start seeing results in the way you and he feel about each other.
The love and adoration will come naturally, and desire will follow.
Katie & Gay Hendricks
If the problem between you and your partner is more than just the occasional silent treatment and also involves constantly bickering, finger pointing and criticism, there's a much more serious issue going on.
Better communication is one way to increase passion and get the flow of good feelings going again.
Sometimes, however, there is such resentment and anger between you that you simply must stop and address the deeper, underlying issues that are causing such a disconnect.
About Katie and Gay Hendricks:
Gay and Katie Hendricks have been leaders in the field of relationship transformation and body mind therapies for more than 45 years.
Gay holds a PhD from Stanford and was a professor of counseling psychology at the University of Colorado for 21 years.
Katie holds a PhD in transpersonal psychology and has been a pioneer of mind-body integration for over 40 years.
Together, they've authored 35 books, including some used as primary textbooks in universities around the world.
They've appeared on over 500 television and radio shows, including Oprah, CNN, CNBC, 48 hours and others.
They've co-facilitated countless seminars and workshops around the world for both individuals and couples looking to experience more ease and flow in their relationships.