Why is communication important in a relationship? Healthy communication in a relationship creates a foundation of lasting trust, fulfillment, and openness between couples. Communication is one of the key ingredients to a healthy relationship.
Over time, people have difficulty getting across to one another. Emotions get in the way, the disconnect is frustrating, communication barriers go up and before you know it, a point is reached where you rather not talk.
Fortunately, communication is a pretty easy fix but does require time.
Since communication in relationships is a huge part of our day to day lives, it really matters in a relationship. Here are tips on improving communication in a relationship.
Good communication requires openness. The thing is, barriers are not broken just because you want them to go away. They don’t disappear when you tell someone, “I want to break down our communication barriers.”
Barriers are broken down by gradual change.
When it comes to communication barriers in relationships, start by removing the criticism, blame, and/or defensiveness from verbal interactions.
Openness only occurs when both participants feel comfortable and safe.
Ways to establish that comfort and safety are avoiding starting sentences with the very accusatory “you”, start expressing feelings with “I feel” or “I am” and make requests by leading with, “Can you” or I would appreciate it if you.”
In the heat of the moment, we tend to catch onto little bits of what someone is saying but completely miss the full picture. This is the cause of people feeling misunderstood and as we know, misunderstandings lead to frustration and establish barriers that are hard to break down.
To implement this tip, give conversations more structure by not interrupting and focusing more on what a person is saying, rather than what you plan to say next.
A few examples would be crossed arms, an indicator of being closed off or feeling attacked, positioning the body away, an indicator of defensiveness and a lack of eye contact, a sign of either dishonesty or disinterest.
Pay close attention to the person you are talking to.
Good communication is like a dance that requires both parties to take cues from one another. If you are getting the feeling that you should back off or direct a conversation elsewhere, take the cue.
Also, watch this video that will help you develop healthy communication skills:
5. Never underestimate the impact of honesty
Communication in relationships relies heavily on honesty. One of the relationship communication skills to cultivate is maintaining honesty in communication in a relationship.
Honesty not only means speaking the truth. It also means being honest with yourself concerning your feelings and viewpoints. One of the ways to improve communication is to remain genuine. Build a relationship in which communication is not an issue and both partners work at adopting effective ways to communicate better.
6. Timing is everything
Along with implementing the tips and techniques on how to communicate better in a relationship, don’t forget about timing. Timing plays a vital role when it comes to facilitating healthy communication in a relationship as an untimely conversation and improper tone can wreak havoc in marital bliss.
When you want to have a conversation, do not initiate simply because you want to talk. Don’t interrupt your partner or expect them to drop their current task to chat.
Rather, ask if they have a moment or if the two of you can speak later. Initiating conversation with an interruption adds an unnecessary irritant right from the start.
7. Always talk face to face
Even topics that are remotely important must be discussed face to face. A face-to-face conversation is one of the most effective ways of communication in a relationship.
Phone calls, texts, and emails only leave loose ends since sometimes they can be unclear. It is easy to misunderstand what someone is saying, especially in texts and emails. These forms of relationship communication have a purpose but having meaningful conversations isn’t one of them.
8. Wait a day or two
When upset about something, of course, you want to make your feelings known. So, how to communicate better about the rift or discord in the relationship with your spouse? Well, definitely do that, but take one or two days to calm down and think the situation through.
It is only natural to want to discuss an issue right when it happens but you need time to facilitate fruitful communication in a relationship.
So, how to communicate effectively in a relationship?
Even when the desire is strong, wait. You want to be the one to speak, not your anger. Anger in relationships entails nothing but negative and accusatory language. Ways to improve communication in a relationship include practicing a 24-hour rule.
Here’s a quick and easy tip on acing the art of communication in a relationship. If an oversight on your lover’s part won’t matter after 24 hours, then letting go of voicing complaints is the best route to facilitating better communication in a relationship.
Practicing effective communication in relationships fosters a stronger love bond, trust, and empathy in a relationship.
If you feel disconnected or frustrated about the state of your marriage but want to avoid separation and/or divorce, the marriage.com course meant for married couples is an excellent resource to help you overcome the most challenging aspects of being married.
Rachael Pace is a noted relationship writer associated with Marriage.com. She provides inspiration, support, and empowerment in the form of motivational articles and essays. Rachael enjoys studying the evolution of loving partnerships and is passionate about writing on them. She believes that everyone should make room for love in their lives and encourages couples to work on overcoming their challenges together.