Not long ago my wife and I were working through a difficult conversation with our kids. At one point, she gave me a look. I thought I knew what it meant and I went with what I deduced was the appropriate reaction. As you might have guessed already, I was wrong. I completely misread her body language, and it ended up creating some tension.
Now to be fair, we can’t expect anyone to guess what we mean based solely on our body language. However, we also know that we do communicate not just with words but also with our bodies. Reading female body language is an important skill for husbands to develop. Here are 3 crucial things to pay attention to if you want to understand your wife.
1. Her Eyes
It’s been said “the eyes are the window to the soul,” and I believe that’s true. Too often we’re so distracted, whether we’re watching TV, scrolling through texts, or checking our email, that we fail to make eye contact with our wives. However, if you want to know what’s going on with your wife, reading female body language begins with making eye contact. Look her in the eyes when she speaks to you. Is she tearing up? Perhaps this topic is more important to her than you think. Is she avoiding eye contact with you? Perhaps she’s nervous about your response. The eyes speak volumes. Pay attention to them.
2. Her Distance
While everyone is different, and certainly some people need physical touch more than others, if your wife is distant physically, it generally tells you there’s something off between you. She might say nothing’s wrong, but if you notice a pattern of her being distant, it’s a sign that she might be feeling emotionally distant from you as well.
3. Her DemeanorWe don’t do it intentionally, but our bodies reflect what’s going on in our heads and hearts.
Often what we communicate with our bodies is unconscious. We don’t do it intentionally, but our bodies reflect what’s going on in our heads and hearts. It’s all connected. This is why when reading female body language, it’s important to pay attention to whether she is “open” or “closed.” If your wife crosses her arms or her legs, it can be a sign of defensiveness or self-protection. In contrast, if she sits with a more open posture, arms at her side, turned toward you, it can communicate a sense of emotional and physical safety.
None of this is bulletproof. And the worst thing you could do is assume you know what your wife is thinking without asking. However, if we want to grow in our attentiveness as husbands and really listen well to our wives, we need to recognize that reading female body language is a necessary skill to develop.
Sound off: What are other types of body language we need to learn to pay attention to in communicating with our wives?
Huddle Up Question
Huddle up with your wife and ask, “What signals do I send with my body when we are communicating?”