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  • Writer's pictureThe Bettered Men Foundation

Explaining The E.A.R. Method

By Sir Aaron Kristopher & David Dunn | Reviewed by Antoinette Kincaid, MA, LPC

[Credit: Joan Dragonfly]

Effective communication is a skill, and the reality is that men and women communicate differently. However, by starting with the acronym E.A.R., we can review a few techniques for effective communication provided by licensed therapist Antoinette Kincaid.

The "E" in "EAR" stands for Empathy. According to Merriam-Webster, it is the action of understanding, being aware of, sensitive to, and vicariously experiencing the thoughts and feelings of another. This applies to:

Clarifying: Finding truth in what the other person is saying, regardless of how illogical, self-serving, or distorted it may seem.

Acknowledgment: Summarizing what the other person has just said, showing them that you understand how they are feeling.

Inquiry: Using gentle, probing questions to learn more about what the other person is thinking.

Next, the "A" is for Assertiveness, which is where your partner expresses bold or confident statements and behavior. This is where you can express your own viewpoint by using "I feel" statements and explain how you feel anxious, attacked, unappreciated, and so on.

Lastly, we have Respect, or the act of giving particular attention or consideration to a person or topic. Everyone has their own definition and expectation of how they should be respected in a relationship, whether it be with an intimate partner, family member, or friend.

When it relates to effective communication, this is where you show affirmation in the conversation. Here, you convey warmth, care, and respect to your partner, even if you are in the middle of a heated argument. That's why an open ear is key to having effective communication.

Lastly, you can help us conduct accurate research, deliver more peer-reviewed articles, and most importantly, build bettered communities. The Bettered Men Foundation in particular works to partner men and couples with local medical and legal professionals in their area at an affordable cost. Please consider donating to either our PayPal or GoFundMe online, or contact us at

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