Anyone who’s ever received relationship advice has probably been told some form of, “communication is key.” We get it! We need to talk to each other to make sure that our relationship lasts. But, knowing that communication is key doesn’t make it any easier in relationships. And it’s useless without knowing how to truly put it into practice. Otherwise, it’s like having a car with no license. It’s great to have but, you can’t do much with it without the other.
I always thought that I understood what communication was. I mean, I have friends and I talk to people. By definition, communication is the imparting or interchange of thoughts, opinions, or information by speech, writing, or signs. So, that’s essentially what I was doing. I thought that by simply talking, I was communicating with my partner. But, that wasn’t the case. Maybe you realized this before I caught on but, communication in relationships is entirely different. There’s a procedure and rules need to be followed.
I noticed that we tend to confuse conversation with our partners with communication. This is the root cause of communication issues in a relationship. And we know that this will make or break many of them. As stated by Tony Robbins, communication in relationships, at its core, is about connecting and using your verbal, written and physical skills to fulfill your partner’s needs – not just making small talk. So, to help with this, we’ll go through the 7 rules you shouldn’t break for communication in relationships.
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7 rules for communication in relationships
Be open and honest
Honesty is key to communication in relationships. Always say what you mean and make your feelings as well as your needs clear. Great relationships are built on respect and trust. You can start building yours by being honest with your partner. If you disagree with something that your partner has said or done, let them know. Don’t agree or pretend that everything is okay when you know that it isn’t.
Also, avoiding any conflict may be the safe thing to do. And, it might prevent any arguments for the moment. However, these issues won’t stay away for long. Eventually, you’ll have a mound of them built up that will come rolling down all at once.
Listen to your partner
Communication in relationships isn’t easy. So, actively listen when your partner speaks to you. Set time aside each day to give each other your complete attention. Show them that they are your priority. Not, anyone outside of your household or social media.
During this time, reflect on what’s being said and make sure that you have a clear understanding of everything. If you listen to them carefully, they could be telling you exactly what they need from you to improve the relationship. And, the last thing you want is for there to be any miscommunication.
Don’t take criticism personally
When you’re being criticized, think and ask yourself, “is this constructive or am I being attacked?” If it’s constructive, there is nothing wrong at all. Your partner should be able to speak openly with you. In fact, it’s to be expected in a healthy relationship. If you decide that you’re being attacked, it’s okay to defend yourself by talking it out.
Don’t try to win arguments
Arguments are not about who’s right and who’s wrong. Communication in relationships isn’t always perfect. Therefore, arguments can and will happen. However, simply trying to win one is pointless and childish. Even if you are technically correct, you should work to find a solution rather than prove how you are correct. This will bring the argument to an end and resolve the issue that caused it.
Don’t go to bed angry
Bring up any issues that may be bothering you before you go to sleep for the night and work to at least get to an understanding. Some may disagree and count this as old age advice. However, bringing the issue up at least brings the issue to your partner’s attention. From there you can either come to an understanding or sleep on it and then reach a solution. Just don’t allow it to linger on.
Understand that your partner isn’t you
Realize that regardless of how much time you and your partner may spend together, they aren’t you. This means that they don’t think as you would nor, will they do everything the same as you. So, you should keep this in mind as you approach every situation.
Keep your problems in-house
If you don’t take any other rule to heart, this is the one that you should. Keep any problem that you and your partner may have between the two of you. It may be tempting to talk to a close friend or family about it but, don’t do it. If you break this rule, depending on who you spoke to, the consequences will be obvious.
You and your partner may have long resolved an issue and have put it behind you. However, whoever you talked to will remember exactly what you told them (Family is especially good about doing this). Now, the next time you and your partner are around this person, they may treat them differently simply because of what you told them. This puts your partner in an awkward situation because they have no idea why this is happening or that you told this person anything that happened between the two of you. So, save yourself from the trouble and keep problems in-house.
These are the 7 Rules not to Break for Communication in Relationships. Now, that you know them, I hope that you’ll keep them in mind and continue to improve the communication in your relationship.