Over the course of the next two weeks, I’ll share each step of the Auxano Communication Approach© in its own post. The entire approach is detailed in Chapter 13 of my book, The Stories We Tell Ourselves.
In my previous post, “Your Spouse is Not Your Nemesis,” I discussed how important it is to the marriage relationship that each person approach the other as a human being and not as someone who’s “out to get you.” When conflict arises, it’s imperative to the health of the relationship that each person seek to be “nonjudgmentally inquisitive.”
In other words, each person needs to learn how to communicate better by asking the right questions of themselves and of their other half. This is not a shocking truth, but how we can go about learning to communicate better—in our marriages as well as in any relationships in our lives—is the point of the Auxano Communication Approach©.
The first step in this approach is to observe and talk about what you just noticed.
This means realizing you’ve likely fabricated stories in your mind about the other person or the troubling circumstances your relationship is facing. Some of what you’ve made up may turn out to be true, but there’s no way to know that for sure unless an honest, humble, and vulnerable conversation takes place.
But before turning to the other person, your first step is to attempt a benign, objective observation about the story you’ve been telling yourself. Does your story really mesh with the facts of the relationship’s problems? Or are you just filling in the blanks based on your feelings?
We’re all guilty of telling ourselves stories about other people on a constant basis. The first step in the Auxano Communication Approach© is to realize you’re doing so, then to assess what “facts” you actually need to corroborate with the other person—which leads to Step 2.