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Written by Jimmie Burroughs Email to a friend
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Marriages are sometimes lost on just one issue: Failing to show empathy. Sympathy and empathy are similar terms that use the same emotion which is feeling a deep concern for what someone else is going through. There is one difference in the two terms: Sympathy is a feeling of concern based on similar experiences while empathy is a feeling of concern without having experienced the same issues. Being able to read your spouse’s emotions can tell you what they are experiencing when they might not tell you directly.
If you are experiencing some stress in your marriage and you want to try to improve the relationship, one thing that can help, and possibly save your marriage is building your empathy. Here are some things to try:
Be sensitive to emotional messages
Keep in mind that your partner may say one thing but their emotions may be saying something altogether different. Your partner my say something of a critical nature, but be feeling something else. Like they might say why do you always have to go out with the guys so much? But what they really mean emotionally is I would like to be with you more, and I worry that you don’t care for me anymore and want to be with me.
Reign in your own emotions
The first emotional impulse when your partner says something critical is to come back with and emotional defense. This blinds you from seeing what the true emotion that your partner is feeling. So bite your tongue, and try to discern what the real problem is. I know that this takes some practice to overcome the self defense mechanism, but it could save your marriage. It can also breathe new life into your relationship.
Be objective and try to consider what your partner is really bothered about
There has to be a reason why she is upset because you go out with the guys so much. She could also take the opportunity to go out with the girls, but that would not solve her problem. Her real problem is she misses being with you and thinks you don’t care as much for her as you used to. Now is the time for you to face up to being a man who is sensitive to the needs of his wife and say, “I agree that I don’t need to spend as much time as I have been with the guys, and besides I love you so much, and need to spend more time with you. Sometimes I forget just how important you are to me and how wonderful it is to be with you. We need to plan to do more things together.”
It is true that we may not always discern the true message that our mate is trying to give, but it will always make a great difference when they know we are concerned about their feelings and want to do the right thing towards them.
The Bible says, “Husbands love you wives as Christ loved the church and gave himself for it.” That means that your mate is so important to you, including whatever she may be going through, that you would sacrifice you own life for her. You probably will never be called upon to sacrifice your life, but you may have to sacrifice your ego and selfishness. Having a loving caring wife or vise verso is the greatest blessing of life. Protecting that relationship and being concerned about filling every need is a top priority. Be sure to read some of the other related articles on this website. You can find them under SITE MAP.
About the author: Jimmie Burroughs is a motivational speaker and author who has been involved in teaching Christian Personal Development for more than 30 years. There are hundreds of articles to help you on this website, Website Contents , in your person growth. Be sure to take vantage of the FREE offer to get the “Personal Development” eBook while available.
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