How Your Tone Of Voice Can Help or Hurt Your Marriage

Couples fight about this one a lot.

“You’re using that tone with me again.”

“No I’m not.”

“Yes you are.”

“All I said was ___________, Geez, why are you overreacting?”

You know this one right?

When it comes to long-term partnership, tone of voice is a big deal.

The most subtle of tones can be like lightly plucking a guitar string…your partner feels it, hears it, and registers it in their body and it can shut them down, or lift them up depending on their nervous system’s history and memory.

If your partner says you have a tone, and you think you don’t, do something different for a change…

Instead of getting defensive like you often do, just try taking their word for it, that your tone is enough to upset them.

Your tone of voice is mimicking a tone they grew up with. So, their experience is valid regardless of what you think your tone is.

That’s right.

It’s 100% valid.

So, no need to waste your energy getting defensive.

Just trust they are impacted by your tone of voice, get their world, validate their feelings and work on softening your tone even more. Because you want to be heard right? Right. (all skills I’m teaching in an upcoming free training. Stay tuned).

And, meanwhile, they can work on not getting hijacked by your tone and instead see your tone as an opportunity to heal an old hurt.

This way, you are both working on the dynamic together, thus becoming a smart couple.

Because after all, you both want to feel seen and understood.

1 Comment

  • Doug Robinson

    Reply Reply July 31, 2017

    I don’t think this is completely accurate. I have said, “Good Morning” to someone and had them react….”What so good about it?” Yes, people can speak in a tone but it is often interpreted in error by the hearer according to their mood or preconceived ideas. Paul writes, “Be anxious for nothing”. Some people are anxious for everything. You can speak to a person in that “mood”, who has been thinking about something that was originally quite small…..but the time you enter into the scene…they are ready to explode….and you just pulled the pin. Be careful and kind how you speak….and at the same time don’t automatically assume the worst…or a “tone” just because you are in the “mood”.

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