Talk To Me! 7 Tips To Get Your Spouse To Open Up

Talk to Me! 7 Tips to Get Your Spouse to Open Up

Do you sometimes have trouble getting your spouse to talk to you?  Or really listen to what you have to say? 

Here are some helpful tips for establishing healthy two-way communication in your marriage or serious relationship.  Even if things haven't reached breakdown level yet, we can all improve in this all-important area!

*7 Tips to Get Your Spouse Engaged*

1. Be the Spouse You Desire

The first step to getting your spouse to treat you the way you desire is to model for them what that looks like.  You can’t directly control their actions, but you can control your own.  If you want them to be interested in what you have to say, be engaging and show how much you care about them.

It is so easy to fall into the trap of only reciprocating, but when you take that approach you both lose.  Try your best to “suck it up” and be the spouse that you want to be married to.  It’s called the Golden Rule for a reason.

2. Speak Their Language

In general, wives crave empathy and husbands crave respect.  Do your best to communicate in a way that fulfills your spouse on their terms.  I highly recommend that you read The Five Love Languages by Dr. Gary Chapman and apply the principles that you learn to connect in a way that your wife or husband will respond to the best.  Speak their love language!

3. Don’t Shut Down

When you are not getting what you want, it is so easy to simply recoil and exact some “revenge” on your spouse by withdrawing.  This is not productive, and it will only degrade your communication further.  I highly recommend that you check out a post on Engaged Marriage called “What’s the Secret to a Happy Marriage?“, and be conscious to avoid the unhealthy communication patterns that are highlighted. 

Remember, it starts with you.

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4. Establish Expectations

Once you’ve gotten your own mind set in the right place, it’s vital that you let your spouse know in clear terms what you need from them.  Find some quiet time, turn off the television and tell your spouse that you really need to talk.  Sit down face-to-face, take their hands in yours, look them in the eye and really impress upon them how very important this is to you.

Don’t assume that your husband (or wife) really understands how deeply concerned you are about their lack of communication.  Tell them.

5. Don’t Expect a Mind Reader

After you’ve been married for a while, it is so easy to fall into patterns.  This is especially true in the area of communication where you develop expectations that your spouse knows what you are thinking and how you’d like them to interact with you. 

Take a few minutes to read “Attention Ladies: Your Husband Cannot Read Your Mind!” and take this message to heart.  With guys in particular, you cannot assume that we know what you want…trust me. 

6. Set Aside the Time to Talk

If you want to have a healthy marriage with extraordinary communication, you have to make it a priority.  This requires time, although it isn’t as difficult as it may sound. 

To get your relationship jump-started in 15 minutes a day, go grab the free report I put together for busy young couples called Marriage Mojo: 7 Simple Steps to Romance for Insanely Busy Couples.

Start setting aside a little time each day for the two of you to simply interact…without all of the distractions we all face in our busy family lives.

7. Affirm, Affirm, Affirm

Make it a point to let your spouse know about the things they do that you like!  There is no better way to encourage the behaviors you enjoy than by using positive reinforcement.

Try to make it a point to tell each other one little thing each day that you liked.  This could be as simple as saying thank you for an encouraging text message or sharing how cool you thought it was that they spent time playing with the kids outside while you prepared dinner in a quiet kitchen.  A little affirmation goes a long way!

*Give It a Shot*

If you take these tips to heart and implement them with passion, I am confident that you can make great strides in your marital communication

If you feel like your spouse needs a kick in the pants, I’d encourage you to take the first step and try engaging them by taking these actions for a week.  You'll be well on your way toward a more fulfilling, and conversational, marriage!

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