Posted by: Frank Walker LMFT | September 17, 2014

Listening In Marriage a Plan

Feel the heat, understand the feelings.

Feel the heat, understand the feelings.


In my counseling sessions with couples I use this process:

Speak, Listen, Recall and Respond.


  1. When discussing a matter I have one person speak and the other person listens. This listening is with an emphasis on understanding and getting right what the speaker has said.
  2. The next step is for the one who was listening to recall what they heard. This could simply be repeating the person’s words or using their own words, but in recalling you must capture the meaning of the speaker’s ideas and feelings.


The listener can say “What I heard you say was…” or “To me you said…” The idea is to recall the essence of what the speaker was saying without interpretation or judgment. A key is to not have a come-back or an answer but just to understand.


  1. The speaker in turn responds to the listeners words to clarify or add to the discussion.
  2. The listener gets their chance to speak and go through the same process.


The point of this all is to take the time to let what is being said sink in and to give respect to what is being said.

  • The biggest problem is communication…

The idea is to bring about empathetic understanding and in doing that to solve problems. The biggest problem seems to be poor communication in the first place.

Taking the time to speak, listen, recall and respond can be a simple way of smoothing out the rough road of marriage difficulties in communicating.


Frank Walker LMFT

# 79575


Questions? Leave a comment and I will be happy to talk with you.

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