“When we attune with others we allow our own internal state to shift, to come to resonate with the inner world of another.” Dr. Dan Siegel

Couple gazing at each other in a forest clearing.

Have you ever felt disconnected from your partner? It’s not a good feeling to have. What to do about it? Having ways of connecting and knowing how to do this is vital to having a healthy relationship. Knowing how to attune to your partner is the trick.

According to Collins English Dictionary, attunement is “an attuning or act of making harmonious.” Making harmonious sounds pretty fabulous in the context of your relationship, right? OK, here’s how to do it. There is a handy acronym that I use as a Gottman therapist, which gives the roadmap.

  • Awareness of the situation at hand. You need to know how your partner is feeling.
  • Tolerance of different viewpoints. It is imperative to understand that each of you has different perspectives that are very real for each of you and are likely different.
  • Turning toward. Find ways of connecting with your partner. It can be as easy as asking, “What’s up?”
  • Understanding. Ask clarifying questions to help you understand your partner’s inner world.
  • Non-defensive listening. Take note of what your partner says without trying to come up with your responses as you listen. Be curious. Ask those clarifying questions.
  • Empathy. Try to sense your partner’s emotions and imagine what they may be thinking or feeling. If you’ve been asking questions and listening non-defensively, you are well on your way to being able to empathize.

And that’s how to attune to one another! So if you ever start to feel disconnected, ATTUNE!

A Survival Kit for Your Relationship

Cover of the exclusive guide: Lockdown driving you crazy? Don't strangle your partner, try this instead…

A Survival Kit for Your Relationship

Our exclusive guide — Lockdown driving you crazy? Don’t strangle your partner, try this instead… is packed with information to help you and your partner come out of the pandemic with a stronger relationship.

Stay up to date with relationship tips and more

Plus our exclusive guide Things your mama never told you about talking dirty…

LeMel Firestone-Palerm, LMFT, LPCC, CGT
LeMel Firestone-Palerm, LMFT, LPCC, CGT About LeMel...
Helping Create Healthy Relationships Since 1997
Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist MFC 42162
Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor LPC 1534
Certified Gottman Therapist