Wife boring you to sleep? (003-Q2-Tim)

Tim writes, “My wife wants me to listen to her, but she is frigging boring. She talks about people she works with, who I don’t know, and it’s usually negative stuff (gripes). If I’m driving, she almost puts me to sleep with her babble. How do I stay awake?”

Answer (From Podcast Episode 003):

All right, Tim. Staying awake. You want to stay awake. Yes, this can sometimes be a challenge if you’re driving, or she’s driving. You might nod off. When your wife talks about her day, as in the example I gave in today’s episode, if she talks about her co-workers, say…it’s sometimes hard not to zone out. But she probably finds your topics of conversation less than amazing, as well (keep that in mind).

I’m not going to say I’ve never zoned out before, because I have. I won’t say I’ve never nodded off before, because I have. One thing will help, though. Start paying attention. Learn the names of the people she’s talking about. Try picturing them in your mind, so you can mentally see them. And this way you’ll start to feel that you know them a little bit too. And this should make it more enjoyable to get those daily updates. We’re usually more interested in people we feel we know.

As for the negativity, you might try perking up a bit when she talks in positive ways. For example, she says something nice about one of her co-workers. Well, when she does that, show more interest. Maybe you can ask her more details about the positive things, and when you ask questions, she’ll feel you’re listening and interested. We talked about this in the episode.

So ask questions about the positive things, not the negative things. And maybe naturally she’ll begin to focus on more of the positives, because she’s getting better feedback on that. And less on the negatives. I’ve done this before, it does work.

It takes an active role in listening, Tim. I think you’ll find it easier to stay awake. Good luck.

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