Stephanie R. Barnard
Interpersonal Communications, COM 200
September 29, 2008
Most people will say that communication is the ultimate key to any relationship. What about in marriage? What role does communication play in marriage? This author has experienced that communication and active listening combined are the golden keys to a successful and richly blessed marriage. Identifying and applying active listening tools used by both partners may enhance anyone’s marriage.
Active listening is defined as: identifying the central idea, forming a mental outline, predicting what comes next, relating your points to your own experience, seeking similarities and differences, and asking questions (Hybels & Weaver, 2007, p. 97). In short, it works much like a debate without interrupting anyone. Active listening does not work by itself though. It takes great practice and does not come without barriers. There are several barriers to effective interpersonal interactions.
A physical barrier is a place where someone is not allowed or closed doors. When building a cohesive partnership, proximity is key. Couples want to feel nearness and it opens up areas for communication. An example of this in the author’s home would be the kitchen. When she is in one of her foul moods she instantly creates a physical barrier that usually involves the kitchen. When her husband arrives home from work he knows she is not open for communicating when she wards him out of the kitchen. Luckily, in her case, the husband allows her some “cool-off time” before approaching her. The right thing for her to do, which she does in most cases, would be to kiss her husband hello and then let him know that she needs a little space before she can effectively communicate.
“The problem with communicating with others is that we all see the world differently. If we didn’t, we would have no need to communicate: something like extrasensory...