Although it may not seem like it, failures in the way we communicate are at the root of many of the problems psychologists see in the couples therapy sessions we carry out.
Where those who come to therapy see “compatibility problems” that threaten the stability of the marriage or dating relationship, on multiple occasions, there is something less abstract and easy to specify: a poor communication pattern on the part of one or both parties of the relationship.
Therefore, here we will see some tips on improving communication in a couple of relationships, proposing simple solutions that are necessary to apply consistently on a day-to-day basis.
Why Communication is Fundamental in Every Relationship
Many times, problems in relationships are mainly caused by a misconception about what love is. Thus, some assume that love is not reflected in the actions we perform, but something that we have or do not have, and that it goes beyond our behavior.
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However, no matter how much love is often talked about as if it were something static. This essence remains inside people (usually, the heart is referred to). The truth is that effective relationships are always something dynamic that it continually changes and keeps in motion, just like humans.
And what is there in personal relationships that are more dynamic than communication? In a matter of fractions of a second, we can transmit verbal or emotional information to other people, causing them, in turn, to modify their attitude and behavior. Furthermore, when communication occurs not in any relationship but a loved one, the implications of this exchange of information are even more relevant.
Bearing this in mind is essential to avoid perceiving love as something that we take for granted: it must also be reflected in how we communicate with that particular person.
Now, unfortunately, not all of us are born knowing, and that is why communication errors often arise that, despite being avoidable, wear down love relationships if they accumulate one after another. Let’s see what to do to avoid this.
How to improve communication with my partner and strengthen the love bond?
If you wish to communicate with your partner more effectively, here are some guidelines that you may follow.
Ensure there is Symmetry in Communication
Relationships that work are symmetrical, both contribute and obtain as much as the other person, and therefore, communication should also be governed by this principle.
This does not mean that both of you should talk for the same amount of time because, ultimately, personality differences can make someone much less talkative than their partner. Still, you should have the same amount of opportunities to express yourself freely, in the good times and the bad times.
Leave Space for Him to Collect his Thoughts
Communication is not just what happens when face-to-face dialogue; It is also necessary to bear in mind that to transmit ideas, it is first required to order them, to know what is meant. Therefore, impatience when waiting for the other person to express themselves can cause many problems. In cases where it is necessary, consider that your partner may need some time to reflect before speaking and that this in and of itself is not a terrible thing.
Don’t Confuse Love with Telepathy
As much as you love each other, that doesn’t mean you can read their mind. Do not finish his sentences or assume that you know what he is going to say since that is not only annoying but can be seen as an attempt to control your partner or to impose opinions that he does not share.
Avoid Passive-aggressive Attitude when Managing Conflicts
It is essential that when the other person has done something that we do not like, we say it directly and clearly. If not, it is possible that we contribute to creating a bad environment, since our attitude and non-verbal language will also denote that we are upset, with the addition that our partner will not know precisely why.
Similarly, if we detect this passive-aggressive attitude on the part of our partner, it is advisable to allow them to express what is happening to them and why they feel that way, and not make it seem that nothing is wrong.
Assume that it is Okay Not to Have Opinions on a Specific Topic
Human beings tend to talk about issues that we either have too much information. Each person has their areas of interest in focusing their intellectual efforts, and that must be respected.
Don’t Ask if You’re Not Going to Listen
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When you don’t have the energy to pay attention to what the other person will explain, be consistent, and don’t pretend that you feel like having a conversation. You will talk when you have the most charged batteries.
Manage Intrusive Thoughts
The issues with “not listening” are frequently caused by something that is spinning in our heads and from which we cannot disconnect: the worry of having a lot of work pending, the urge to smoke, a painful memory, etc. In these cases, we must first assume that the communication problem arises from this phenomenon, known as psychological rumination, and remedy it.
Adapted and translated by The Cop Cart Staff