We all know how effective communication is the strongest foundation of a good relationship. The ability to comfortably talk to your partner without any restriction or fear of judgment is not something that comes easily to people. Here are some ways you can improve communication to have a better relationship.
Be a good listener.
The first rule of effectively communicating with your partner is to be a good listener. When they are saying something important, make them feel that they have your undivided attention and you are listening to everything, not just because you have to but because you genuinely care about their lives.
Avoid confrontation as much as possible.
This is especially important while you are having a disagreement. You are upset or outraged about something, but instead of taking it out on your partner, take a break and calm yourself. Approaching any problem with a confrontational perspective just worsens the situation and is a sign of poor communication.
Ask more questions.
Rather than assuming that something happened or you think something’s wrong, it’s better to ask questions and get things clarified. Also, a part of effective communication is to get to know your partner better, and that will not happen unless you ask questions and have direct interactions about your lives.
Validate your partner’s opinions and emotions.
A common problem that often ruins relationships is when people start thinking that their partners don’t take them seriously or don’t acknowledge their emotions or opinions. So, to improve communication, try to express clearly that their feelings are equally important to you and you are not taking them for granted.
Avoid taking a cheap shot for no reason.
Getting into arguments can often make you vindictive and lead you to take a cheap shot at your partner. What we don’t realize is that these communication strategies are not only ineffective, but they also grow resentment and dissatisfaction among partners. So, be mindful before you take an unnecessary jab.
Don’t try to sugarcoat your shortcomings.
Sugarcoating your weaknesses or making excuses will never help if you want to have effective communication in your relationship. Accept that we make mistakes, and there’s nothing to be ashamed about. Instead, always directly discuss the matter with your partner and try to find a solution without having ugly fights.
Signs someone is trying to impress you:
- They are always curious to know more about you.
- They always maintain eye contact while talking.
- They express themselves directly because they want you to know that they are honest.
- You can sense a feel-good factor around them.
- They always try to make an impression when they are around you.
- They are always conscious of your likes and dislikes.
- They might express their feelings towards you directly.
- They are not afraid to let their guard down and open up to you.
- They will never judge you and accept you for who you are.
- They are constantly complimenting you for the most trivial things.
Develop a more engaging body language.
Suppose your partner is saying something to you. Instead of listening to them intently, you are stuck on your phone, or you are ignoring them. This is the worst communication habit people have. When you are with them, let your body language express how engaged you are in this conversation.
Be mindful of your partner’s body language.
This is another way of showing that you are truly involved in this conversation. Notice how your partner’s body language changes when they are with you. See if they are making any sexual advances and want you to understand it. Often, poor communication can ruin the emotional understanding between partners.
Don’t lose track; stay on topic.
Suppose you and your partner are having an important conversation about your vacation plans. Halfway through, you start talking about a work problem. This can also cause misunderstanding in a relationship because your partner might feel you are not listening to them seriously. So, always stay on topic while talking.
Don’t dig up past uncomfortable incidents.
Your partner trusts you with their vulnerabilities because they know that you will never use their weaknesses against them or try to hurt them. So, another golden rule of good communication is to never bring up past incidents or old wounds that have been difficult or hurtful for your partner.
Maintain a level of transparency.
Try to be as radically honest in your communication as possible. You do have a personal space, but having too many secrets can make your partner think that you don’t trust them enough. So, be it trivial stuff or a major life decision, always discuss everything with your partner openly.
Be mindful of your tone.
We don’t consider this important but our tone while speaking with our partners influences our communication a lot. If your tone always has a hint of sarcasm or derision, your partner might feel offended. Convincing them to do something or solve a problem becomes easier when your tone is effective.
Choose your words wisely.
Always think before you speak. No matter how angry or irritated you are, it doesn’t give you the right to hurt your partner or say something offensive. So, even when you are in a difficult situation, choose your words very carefully. Don’t say something they can use against you forever.
Confirm your partner’s thoughts by repeating.
To avoid a scenario where your partner thinks you aren’t listening intently to them, repeat their statements in your conversations. This strategy helps a lot if you want to eradicate unnecessary confusion and misunderstanding in conversations. Express that they have your undivided attention and you are not hearing something different.
Your actions should match your words.
Effective communication is not just about good conversations. It’s also about standing your point and sticking to your word. If you want your partner to feel your love and dedication, you have to express it openly. If you promise something to them, do everything to fulfill it, no matter what.
Don’t bottle up your emotions.
You can never have effective communication in your relationship if you don’t express yourself openly to your partner. Rather than bottling up your emotions or holding onto grudges deep within, it’s better to get them out. Otherwise, when it eventually comes out, you won’t be able to handle the rush.
Signs you have bottled-up emotions:
- Everyone around you thinks you are a very tough person.
- Your emotions are released through your frequent tantrums.
- You can listen to others for hours but never open up to them.
- You often suffer from loneliness and despair.
- You are anxious about something, but you don’t know what it is.
- You are constantly keeping yourself busy.
- You avoid the main problem by engaging yourself in addictive activities.
- You are gaining and losing weight all the time.
- You suffer from frequent migraines and headaches.
- You don’t prioritize physical wellness.
Don’t play the blame game.
There remains no scope for effective and peaceful communication if you start playing the blame game. Pointing fingers at your partner or trying to dump the responsibility of fixing everything on them will not solve your problem. Rather, this will create an imbalance in your relationship and ruin your understanding.
Express your appreciation openly.
You just don’t need effective communication in complicated situations. Even when everything is going well, and you are in a healthy relationship, you have to communicate openly. Tell your partner how much you love and appreciate them, and express your gratitude for this relationship. This open validation improves your understanding.
Do not hesitate to compromise.
A part of effective communication is to let go of that selfish ego and do what’s best for your relationship. If you aren’t humble enough to swallow your pride, you can never have a peaceful relationship. Negotiations are a normal thing, only if it doesn’t make you lose your self-esteem.
Don’t say what you don’t believe in.
There’s no point beating around the bush or trying to impress your partner by saying things you cannot do or don’t believe in deep within. If you want to have flexible and transparent communication, you have to be honest. If you are worried about their response, be graceful and kind.
Never interrupt your partner.
Interrupting someone while they are talking is so rude. The easiest thing to do to improve communication in a relationship is to always let your partner finish their sentences. Even if you have something urgent to say, hold it. This is a great way to show that you respect them.
Don’t keep a conversation hanging.
We often keep uncomfortable topics on the side because we don’t want to stress ourselves out. But what we don’t realize is that avoiding the situation doesn’t make it better. Yes, you can take a break and recollect your thoughts, but at some point, you have to discuss them openly.
Don’t be afraid to embrace vulnerability in your conversations.
Your partner is not just there to discuss the good things in your life. You must be comfortable enough to discuss your weaknesses and insecurities with them. If you don’t, they might feel like you are trying to hide the real you from them. This can create an emotional distance.
Use ‘I’ sentences more frequently.
The best way to have more effective communication is to not say anything that makes your partner feel like you are blaming them. So, say ‘I’ sentences more frequently. For example, saying, ‘I think we need to take this seriously is much better than saying, ‘You never take anything seriously.’
Always have face-to-face conversations.
Suppose you have something very important to discuss with your partner, but they are away for work. Instead of doing it over phone calls or texts, wait for them to come back so that you have a face-to-face conversation. This is very personal, and the chances of misunderstandings are less.
Don’t make false assumptions.
You just can’t pick a fight with your partner because you assumed they did something wrong. Assuming something without thinking radically or not having enough evidence can affect your relationship terribly. Always be sure of what you are accusing your partner of; otherwise, it’s useless, and the joke’s on you.
Never yell at your partner.
You are very close to your partner. This doesn’t give you the right to yell at them during a fight. If you want to have effective communication, you have to respect them first. Unnecessary yelling or bad-mouthing will just make the situation more uncomfortable, and you’ll end up hurting your partner.
Don’t try to manipulate them.
There’s no alternative to direct communication in relationships. So, instead of beating around the bush or manipulating your partner to suit your needs, tell them what you want straightforwardly. Don’t play with their emotions just because you know they truly love you and will do anything to see you happy.
Respect your partner’s perspective.
Accept that you and your partner are people with different personalities; therefore, it’s perfectly normal that your opinions do not match. A part of effective communication recognizes the other person’s perspective is equally important as yours. Don’t dismiss their feelings just because you think you are right.
Say ‘I love you more frequently.
Yes, a verbal proclamation of your love is very important. When you say ‘I love you, your partner knows you acknowledge this relationship and are not afraid to express your feelings towards them. You have no idea how a simple ‘I love you can work wonders to improve your communication.
To conclude, if you can incorporate at least a few of these communication strategies in your relationship, you will see how it helps you improve your understanding with your partner. Effective communication will surely help you strengthen your relationship and have a loving and peaceful connection with your partner forever.
Signs that you have communication issues with your partner:
- Your partner is bent on winning an argument rather than finding a solution.
- Your partner plays the blame game and wants to make you feel responsible for all problems in your relationship.
- Your partner never encourages healthy feedback. Instead, they criticize you.
- You never have any eye contact while having a conversation.
- You are constantly multitasking, resulting in fragmented conversations.
- Your partner exhibits passive-aggressive behavior in tough times.
- Your partner will always interrupt you while you are talking about something important.
- Your disagreements always turn into ugly fights.
- You never communicate directly and mostly rely on text messages.
- Unsolved issues and unspoken grudges are a constant part of your relationship.
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“Compassion, understanding, and connection” – these three words describe me the best. I founded “TheLoveBoy” to share joy of Love. As a self-taught practitioner, I have been studying the dynamics of human connection for the past decade and my passion lies in sharing my insights with others. My mission is to help individuals cultivate deeper and more meaningful relationships