When there is a relationship that you are in that you value and that you want to have a strong relationship, communication is important. Being able to share your opinions, feelings, and everyday thoughts with someone helps you feel connected to that person. Being supported as you share your heart helps you to feel safe and ready for anything that life brings.
Too often, relationships fall apart because the two people who are trying to live as a couple refuse to listen to one another. When communication is bad, when one person shuts the other out or the two people refuse to talk with one another, a relationship can quickly disintegrate.
Communicate Well By Bringing Up Issues Immediately
There may be times when you are so focused on keeping the peace in a relationship that you ignore issues as they come up. You might let things slide as your spouse shows up late for a family get-together or getting home at night. You might allow your spouse to leave dirty clothes on the floor but then feel resentment toward them each time that you pick up those clothing items for them. Do not put any grievances with your significant other off. Address them as soon as possible.
The first step toward having loving communication in a relationship is to bring up issues as they come up. Don’t ignore what you see going on simply because you think that talking about things is too tiring or may start up a fight. Resolving relationship conflicts helps you grow closer to your partner. A strong relationship starts with being willing to communicate with that person.
As soon as you notice that there is something that is going on in your relationship that is making you unhappy, make a plan to talk about that with your partner. You might ask them to go out with you so that the two of you can talk, or you might simply get a conversation going while you are at home. Share what it is that is bothering you, why that is bothering you, and what can be done to make things better. Offer to be part of the solution, and be patient with your loved one. Work toward a resolution together and know that not everything is going to be fixed right away.
Focus on One Issue at a Time
When you have to bring up issues with your partner, you might find yourself creating a list of all of your complaints in your mind. Rather than creating a list of all of your complaints and throwing them at your spouse, focus on a single issue at a time. Focusing on just one issue will help you get to the bottom of things, and actually bring about change. It is important to keep your partner from feeling like you are just looking to attack them and their way of life.
If you want a relationship to last, your communication has to be calm and focused. You need to address issues as they come up, but you should work on those one at a time. Don’t bring up things from the past as you are talking about something that is going on in the present. Writing out what you want to discuss with them before discussing it can help to stay focused on the issues at hand. Stay focused on the issue that matters most to you in the present and keep talking until that issue feels resolved.
Really Pay Attention When Listening to Your Loved One
When you are not the one to start up a conversation, you might have a hard time focusing on the one who is talking to you. If you are in the middle of something and your partner tells you that the two of you need to talk, set aside what you are doing and focus on the conversation. If you are in the middle of something that you cannot leave immediately, ask your partner if you can find another time to talk so that you can really focus on them and what they have to say. Don’t try to do two things at once while communicating with your partner; doing that will only frustrate both of you and end in a mess.
When you sit down to talk with your partner, show that you are focused on them. Pay attention to their emotions. How the conversation is making them feel? As your partner talks, react to what they are saying and respond calmly. Show that you understand them and that you have empathy toward them. Offer suggestions of how the two of you might change things when your spouse brings up complaints. If your spouse is talking about something difficult, be there for them physically. Hold their hand or draw them close. Put aside everything else that you need to do and really focus on making sure that your spouse knows that you care about them and that you are listening to them.
Know That You Are Not Always Right
It is hard for anyone to admit that they have messed up or that they are on the losing side of an argument. If you and your partner are fighting about something, consider what you are saying and whether or not you are actually right. Admit it when you are wrong and be willing to apologize. Don’t interrupt your partner to insert your own opinion when they are trying to tell you something. Let your partner have times when they are the one who is in the right. Really push yourself to see things from their perspective. You and your partner will get along much better if you are both willing to admit it when you are wrong.
Take a Break Then Come Back to the Discussion
Staying calm while having a conversation is important. If you or your partner start to raise your voice or say things that are disrespectful, it is important to take a break right away so that your relationship is not permanently harmed. Be willing to step away from the conversation for a time so that you can both cool down.
As you take a break, consider going out to get some fresh air. Do something that brings you peace so that you will be able to act like a new person as you return to the conversation. Know when things are starting to get too tense and put a stop to the conversation before you or your partner have the chance to say something that you will end up regretting.
Get Help When Things Seem Out of Control
If you are unable to continue a conversation in a peaceful manner, even after taking a break, you may need someone else to lead the conversation for you. A third party like a relationship counselor can make sure that everyone stays calm while talking and that both of you are able to share your heart. If you are finding it difficult to get through a conversation with your partner consider setting up an appointment to talk with a therapist. The two of you can sit down with someone who is trained to help couples share the issues that you are going through in a calm and respectful way.
Be Willing to Forgive and Move On
Any couple that is trying to make things work will have conversations that don’t go well. You may say things that you regret. You may also have things said to you that hurt you. After things have gotten tense, be willing to make up and move on. As long as you and your partner have not taken things too far or become physical or acted in another unacceptable way, it is important to be forgiving and to move on from tense exchanges.
Accept apologies when they are offered. Let your partner know that you are willing to forget what happened. Communication will only work well if you and your partner love one another enough to apologize and forgive.
A relationship thrives when two people are willing to communicate with one another and share their feelings with one another. When two people are open about what is going on in their lives, willing to look at one another and have a deep conversation, they create a bond that is hard to break. It is important for you and your partner to work on building bridges in your relationship by communicating openly rather than putting up walls when you have issues that must be addressed. If you feel that an argument is brewing take a break from the conversation or involve a third party to mediate. This will allow you to address any issues you have with one another in a productive and responsible manner.