What is the secret to resolving 90% of marital arguments? Empathy. Webster’s Dictionary describes empathy as “the action of understanding, being aware of, being sensitive to, and vicariously experiencing the feelings, thoughts, and experience of another of either the past or present without having the feelings, thoughts, and experience fully communicated in an objectively explicit manner; also : the capacity for this.”
DOES THIS SOUND FAMILIAR?
I don’t know how to make him happy.
I wish he would quit bringing this up.
I don’t understand him.
Why is everything such a big deal?
STEP INTO EACH OTHER’S SHOES
Drs. Les and Leslie Parrott say in The Good Fight, “Because research shows that 90 percent of marital arguments can be resolved if all the couple does is accurately see the issue from each other’s perspective. Don’t miss this point: nine times out of ten, conflicts are resolved when couples step into each other’s shoes.”
Try to act, think and talk like the other person. By putting yourself in their place, you will see things from a new perspective. After understanding why your spouse feels the way they do, you can come up with some ideas to get on the same page. Sometimes we forget to tell each other things that happened when we grew up that may influence us. By opening up you will understand each other better and become closer.
I have to be honest and say marriage can be hard sometimes. It can also be awesome if you work at it. I have learned to have empathy and put myself in Jon’s shoes and it has really helped me understand where he is coming from. I would love to hear from you if you get some good results making this change. Please share with your friends that may benefit from this.