How many of us even realize we have communication issues in a relationship?
Most of the problems in relationships arise due to a communication gap which, if not solved, over a while creates a huge space for negative feelings, emotions and sometimes can also land us in the unwanted space where none of us wants to be.
The reason I am writing this is that I have been through this phase and after going through all the worst experiences one can have in a relationship and after trying to figure out what can the actual problem be, I came to the realization, the actual problem was with “Communication.”
Once couples start avoiding below three mistakes communication becomes much easier for relationship to last long.
When couples come across discussing a particular issue, the problem is we expect our partner to understand the entire situation without even listening to what they have to say, and even if we listen our assumptions are on their way to make it more difficult to communicate and ultimately be in the space of guilt. I completely understand this problem which many couples are facing in their relationships.
Here are the three ways by which couples can start having good communication about any situation they come across and can get the best results. I have been doing these for a long and it just takes your relationship to next level.
Listening to your partner gives us clarity about their opinion and thoughts which always works two ways. Firstly, it lets the partner feel that they are being heard, a sense of acceptance and secondly, there are no chances of misunderstanding as to its already communicated. It now allows us to put our point of view and creates some point of agreement.
One of the easiest ways to do this is to take a pause during an argument, let the your partner complete what they have to say, and then respond.
Sometimes taking a short pause is not enough, for a situation to cool down. In such situation, it’s ok to stop the conversation at that point but addressing that we will definitely be discussing it as the first thing after some time, will make your partner heard and accepted. Listening is one of the most powerful tools if used properly helps to sustain relationships.
Couples usually fall into this trap during arguments as both of partners have to prove their point. We assume things based on our conditioning or because we overheard somewhere or from somebody else’s point of view, past experiences, reason can be anything. Instead of assuming things bring the conversation no matter what the topic is, to have better clarity.
One of the easiest ways is, just by asking yourself what did the person say or do and what was the impact of this on me? Based on this impact, what is the assumption I am making about this person?
Share your impact with your partner or what it made you feel and enquire about the intentions. Of course, expect some defensiveness, but there is a fair chance of owning it if is reflected properly.
This was one of the major learning for me from the book “Difficult Conversations”by Douglas Stone-Bruce Patton and Sheila Heen . I have been implementing it since then and have seen amazing outcomes.
One of the biggest communication mistakes is projecting your past emotional baggage onto your partner. Some of us blame having control over the conflicts, or a person can be wrong as the list goes on. Imagine couples just blaming each other and where would the discussion land towards the end or no end!
Neither of them works in favor of marriages. They only seed anger, frustration, resentment, and the main question is, whom to blame ???
Also, we think why should we not blame when we know our partner is at fault??When we are in a blame frame we are judging one’s actions, behaviors, and personality and this is just going to make things worse between the couples.
The easiest way to deal is to see what was our contribution to the current situation and how can it be changed . Once we understand our contribution and improve to work together in the future, there are higher chances of resolving.
Although, there are many communication mistakes which normally couples do, above three are the basic ones and can be avoided once we are aware and willing to improve. Conscious steps can be taken to overcome them for healthy relationships.