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Marriage Builder: Mind reading

Can you really read your mate's mind? Marriage experts Claudia and David Arp suggest you take some time today to really listen to your partner.

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"People who have lived together for a long time can read each other's minds." Would you say this statement is true or false? It's true that after twenty-six years of marriage we can often predict that the other will do or say, but that's far from being a mind reader.

So let us dispense with the myth that partners can read each other's minds. If we assume we can read each other's minds, we pave the way for misunderstanding. Since we all continue to grow and change throughout life, only we know what we're thinking. Here's an action point for you: Really listen to each other today. Don't assume you know what the other is thinking. Even at times when we aren't mind reading, we may miss the real message. The next time you're not sure you understand what your mate is saying, you could say something like, "Honey, this is what I heard you saying... Am I right?" This gives the other person the chance to confirm that you've got it right or to clarify the meaning.

So next time resist the urge to tell your mate what he or she is thinking. Remember, most of us are poor mind readers. Besides, it's more fun to listen, to ask questions, and to talk with one another.

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