In any marriage, the ability to communicate with your partner at ease is the key to its success. Oftentimes, poor communication can result in unnecessary arguments that can escalate troubles and lead to a troubled marriage or divorce. Without the ability to properly communicate with your partner, words can be misconstrued, taken out of context and/or become hurtful.
When it comes to communication in a marriage, it is a known factor that men and women communicate differently from one another and this can most often be the underlying issue for causing poor communication.
In order to improve the communication skills within your marriage, we offer you some tips that can be easily embraced:
1. Know how to read your partners’ various forms of communication – for instance, as human beings we communicate not only verbally but also non-verbally through the use of body language and expressions. Women tend to be more animated using their hands while speaking, making facial expressions and crossing their arms. Men, on the other hand, are less likely to use their hands while speaking, have little to no facial expression and have a more open and relaxed body language.
Other forms of non-verbal communication include; squinting eyes, finger tapping, head nodding and eye rolling. Most often, these non-verbal forms of communication are used by women and can be thought of as unpleasant gestures according to men. Therefore, it is suggested for a male partner to accept that this is a form of communication for women and for a woman partner to accept that it may make her partner uncomfortable; perhaps, tone it down.
2. Understand communication differences amongst men and women – Since we all know that men and women communicate differently, it is best to approach this situation with compassion for one another. Be understanding of the fact that you and your partner may, and probably will, communicate differently.
When in conversation, women are more likely to use more words than men and men are likely to hold their feelings in longer than women do. This can mostly lead to a man feeling overwhelmed and a women feeling as if she isn’t getting enough out of her partner.
3. Speak clearly and openly about your feelings – Instead of keeping your feelings in and/or feeling like your partner won’t understand, prepare in advance the correct way and time to approach the situation and allow yourself to be clear and open about your feelings. Understand that your partner is more likely to be accepting of your feelings if you share it with them in a manner that is more relatable.
For instance, instead of telling your partner what they did to make you upset or angry, try to explain to him / her how their actions made you feel; as a person, not just a wife or husband but as an individual whose pain is real.
4. Use words that are concise but not hurtful – Words can hurt deeply- often more than actions. Therefore, be careful of the way you speak to your partner; or any other loved one for the fact of the matter. Use words that do not belittle or “put down” your partner. Also avoid using words that criticize, are cruel or are coming from anger.
In a marriage, it is best to not go by the old saying of; “Sticks and stones may break my bones but words will never hurt me” as this proves to be untrue. Couples often remember the hurtful things said by their partners and can later feel remorseful of them.
In conclusion, the most important factor for improving communication within your marriage is to have patience and understanding towards one another’s various forms of communication and to use as little anger as possible when speaking. Perhaps some situations should wait until later to be discussed after feelings have been processed and emotions have been calmed.