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6 Surprising Ways to Communicate Better With Your Partner

Shared experiences

We feel closer to others when we can talk about the experiences we have in common. 

Words are not necessary for shared feelings to improve a relationship. Just doing something at the same time—riding bikes, watching a movie, or eating dessert, intensifies both pleasant and unpleasant experiences.

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6 Surprising Ways to Communicate Better With Your Partner

6 Surprising Ways to Communicate Better With Your Partner

https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/the-couch/201501/6-surprising-ways-communicate-better-your-partner

psychologytoday.com

6

Key Ideas

Make small talk

You communicate a genuine interest when you inquire or listen to the small details that make up your partner’s day. It’s those insignificant moments that make up the reality of our lives.

Listen carefully

Knowing that you are being heard is one of the experiences most likely to cement a feeling of connection to another. 

Use a technique called “active listening” - a form of listening in which you acknowledge that you understand what is being said. 

Ask questions

Don’t assume that you know the answers.

Talk and listen

Finding a healthy balance between talking and listening is difficult in most relationships, but even harder as you get to know each other, so it’s important that you both get a chance to talk and listen.

Increase your "insignificant" experiences

Simply spending time together doing unimportant and supposedly meaningless activities—reading the paper, listening to music, watching TV, or doing laundry—can be more important to the health of a relationship than talking about feelings. 

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Communication needs improvement if:
  • You are having trouble getting through to your spouse; you talk about the same issue over and over again without coming to an agreement.
  • You seem unable to have a decent conversation...
Just Communicate

It is difficult to discuss some sensitive subjects, and we are tempted to avoid them. Other times we simply expect our partners to know what we are doing, thinking or what we want.

It is much better to get things out in the open regularly rather than waiting to have big rows that might damage your relationship.

Listen actively

Be curious about your partner’s point of view rather than trying to anticipate every situation. Active listening involves:

  • Paying attention to your partner.
  • Tolerating your silence.
  • Paying attention to your partner’s nonverbal communication.
  • Reflecting and paraphrasing what your partner is saying: I hear you say you feel angry when I ….. Is that what you are saying?

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Know what you need

Take two minutes right now and list what would most benefit you. It could be taking 15 minutes to decompress after work. Or to have a few hours a week to read a book. Or even guitar lessons.

Highlight what sticks out to you the most on your list. Then decide what top few choices are suitable for your available time and finances.

Communicate your needs

To have a successful and productive conversation with your partner about your needs and desires:

  • Timing is everything. Set a time aside together that is free of distractions, relatively peaceful, and not when you are overtired.
  • Remember, you're on the same team. Handle the conversation with gentleness and without criticism.
  • Actively listen. To encourage understanding, don't just listen to respond. Truly try to understand how your partner feels.
  • It's about giving and taking. Relationships are about mutual understanding, compassion, and sacrifice.
  • Do regular relationship checkups to foster connection and open communication.