Any relationship that you have relies heavily on communication; whether it’s a friend, co-worker, family or a loved one, communication is essential to make these relationships stay happy and healthy. It is no surprise then that one of the main reasons that relationships fail is lack of communication. Sometimes it isn’t that we don’t want to communicate with others, but that you might not realize how to communicate effectively. Here are some tips on why communication is so important and what you can do about it.
What is Communication?
The technical definition is the transfer of information from one place to another. However, this definition is not always carried out by humans in the same way. For some people, communication to them means that they tell others how they think and what they feel. While this is a good thing, they sometimes forget that to be a good communicator, you also have to listen. You can be so busy telling people what you want, that you never ask people what they want. It can cause as many issues as not communicating at all because you are not seeing the other person’s side of the story.
Early Communication in a Relationship
One of the best relationship secrets is to start communicating early on, that means being honest about what you like and don’t like. Even if you think that you know the other person well, there may be some things you don’t know. If you are unsure about something, don’t guess, ask them. Hopefully,they will answer you honestly. Any new relationships will have some things that you both don’t want to share, but to be in a relationship for the long term, you need to know everything about the other person. If there are things that you only discover months or years after you have been together, then this can cause deep trust issues.
When to Talk to Your Partner
There are good and bad times to talk to your partner; it is important that you have these conversations when you are both rested and have time to discuss them. Set aside a time when you won’t be distracted by the television or other people and try to think ahead of what you want to say. You need to be clear about what you want and how you feel, if you are too vague, your partner will be confused and won’t know what to do. You should also try to be aware of your tone of voice, if you think that it is getting too loud, then lower it down. It can sometimes be a good idea to create a talking day or evening when you both know that is what’s going to happen. It will give you both time to think and prepare what you need to say.
Listening and Talking
When you have set aside a time to talk, you need to start the process of actually communicating in a way that is helpful and constructive to both of you. If you can’t decide who should go first, then draw lots or flip a coin, then start by saying something positive instead of going straight in for the negative. Be honest with your partner, but also be aware of their feelings and don’t be cruel just for the sake of it. Once you have told them what you wanted to say, give them the opportunity to reply. Even if they say something you don’t like, don’t interrupt them until they have finished. If you do, then they will start to interrupt you, andthings will get out of hand. When they are talking, try to listen as much as possible, they might tell you things you didn’t realize, andthis could be the only opportunity to hear it. Keep this backward and forward taking and listening going until you have both finished. Hopefully, you should have both resolved some of these issues, but it is important to try and come to some resolution if you can.
Your body can often betray what you are feeling, and this can lead to a lot of misunderstanding. That is why it is always best to be open and honest about your feelings, as your body will tell your partner something else. For example, if you say ‘I love you’ but do it in a flat tone of voice with an uninterested look, your partner will pick up on that more than what you said. Take note of body language and try to be honest about what you say. Similarly, if you notice that your partner’sbody language has changed, then try to talk to them about it. Be subtle and non-combative about it, because if you go in to aggressively, they will become defensive.
Don’t Be Afraid to Ask for Help
Some couples try to struggle on in a relationship because they think that’s what you should do. The truth is that no relationship should make you unhappy, so if things are not working,you need to find a solution. If you want to try and make things work, then seek some professional help in the form of marriage guidance or therapy. Your partner might not always be open to this, but if they care about the relationship, then they will try to get help with you. Counseling doesn’t always work, so you need to be prepared for this eventuality. However, in many cases, therapy can be the thing that causes couples to understand each other and learn to communicate effectively. If you do not want to make things work, or if things like therapy have been triedin the past, then it might be best to agree to leave the relationship and start again.
Communication isn’t always the easiest thing to do; itcan be hard to talk about things that are sad or painful to you. However, if you can tell your partner these things, then you will have someone that you can share these difficult things with, and hopefully, make them easier.