In many relationships patterns develop which become established over time. Often, when listening to our spouse we fall into the category of being tone deaf when it comes to matters of the heart. Really listening, especially to another’s heart takes a willingness to be honest and vulnerable in the relationship. This can be difficult work if a couple is entrenched in poor communication and out of practice when it comes to intentional listening.
How about some fine-tuning of the heart? And a check-up on listening? Find about twenty minutes of uninterrupted time. (Difficult with children, I know, but worth the time investment.) Sit facing one another and look into each other’s eyes. Converse with one another. Listen well. Listen with your ears to hear the words spoken, but also listen with your heart, full of love for the other person. For many couples, the dating phase of the relationship was full of intentional listening. If you've gotten out of this stage of listening, right now is a good time to reconnect and listen with your heart.
p.s. This is not for couples only. It also works with family and friends.