Dawn and I seem to address one issue continuously when working with couples. It is the frustration a partner senses when they feel their mate does not understand them.

Do you ever find yourself saying to your partner, "You're not listening to me!"? If so, have you ever thought why you say that? Obviously, it may be a valid statement. It may be true your partner is not a good listener. But, let me ask you, are you?

It's fair to say that we all probably want to be heard and understood. After all, who doesn't? But, realize this, what's true for you is most likely true for your partner. They probably want to be heard and understood just as much as you do.

James 1:19 gives us a great rubric with which to function in communication with one another - "Be quick to hear, slow to speak and slow to anger."

If your relationship is like most, you've probably had times, because you felt unheard and misunderstood, where you flipped the James 1:19 rubric upside down by your actions to say, "Be slow to hear, quick to speak and quick to anger."

If you can relate to that upside down reaction, let me ask you - how did it work for you? I suspect not so great. I'd anticipate one of you ended up on the couch for the night.

I've yet to meet a couple that says, "Scott, our communication is pretty pathetic and we love it that way." I'm pretty sure if you and your partner's communication is pathetic, you would like some help.

Let me encourage you to check out the short article below. It is succinct and gives you some very practical steps towards becoming a more effective listener.

Trust me in this, if you become a better listener, it's more likely that your partner will also. But, one of you has to take the first step. Why not let it be you?

Check out this helpful article from Prepare Enrich entitled "5 Ways to Show You're Really Listening."