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How to Communicate Your Self-Care Needs to Your Partner

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.

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How to Communicate Your Self-Care Needs to Your Partner

How to Communicate Your Self-Care Needs to Your Partner

https://hbr.org/2020/04/how-to-communicate-your-self-care-needs-to-your-partner

hbr.org

3

Key Ideas

Personal needs

Working parents tend to focus all their energy on work or family and put their own needs on hold. With the current crisis, parents have even less time for their own needs while they juggle work and family life.

But the benefits of taking care of ourselves are undeniable. And while we know the benefits, it can be challenging to communicate our personal needs to our partner.

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.

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