Communication problems in relationships are so common. In fact no matter how great you and your sweetie get along, you are bound to run into some miscommunication somewhere along the line. The good news is, with the right approach, these problems usually aren’t too hard to solve.
Overcome Communication Problems by Bridging the Gender Divide
Men and women approach relationships in distinctly different ways. Without an open mind, it is all too easy to write the opposite gender off as “illogical” or even start thinking of their differences as childish or petty.
The fact is neither gender is perfectly logical. Taking some time to learn about exactly how the opposite gender looks at love matters can help you avoid a lot of problems in relationships.
Overcome Communication Problems by Listening Thoughtfully
Don’t forget that you are one half of the communication problem. When you have been together for a while, you might start to think you know what your partner is going to say. Unless you have ESP, though, you will get a lot farther by actually hearing your partner out. When your sweetie tells you something, restate what they said to make sure you understood correctly and let them know you heard.
Release the Need for Blame
When one of you has a problem, the relationship has a problem and it is in both your best interests to work it out peacefully.
Instead of going around in circles trying to decide whose fault it is, focus on how you are going to solve it. Likewise, try to avoid blaming your partner for your overall mood. Specific issues like “When you flirt with other people, I feel rejected” are fine. However sweeping statements like “You make me miserable” or “You stress me out” are taking it too far.
Stick to the Facts
When trying to talk over problems in relationships, do not bring up any thing you cannot prove. Instead, stay with what cannot be argued like your own feelings and what your partner already agrees they do. For example, saying “You disrespected me in front of my friends” can be argued because standards of respect differ. On the other hand, saying “I was embarrassed when you told Dave you don’t think I should ask for a raise” is not only unarguable. In fact it gets your point across more clearly.
Be Frank, but Kind
You are not doing anyone any favors by taking a “put up and shut up” attitude to problems in relationships. All you end up doing is allowing wounds to fester. They may eventually reach the point where they will never heal at all.
Instead, speak your mind when you have a problem, but do so with gentleness, kindness, and respect. Remember, your partner probably is not trying to hurt or annoy you. In fact they may be pretty upset to hear you are unhappy.
Be a Friend, not a Coach
Chances are, your partner is not with you because they are hoping you can correct all their bad habits and personality flaws. You are not their parent, teacher, coach, or boss. As a matter of fact you are their friend and lover.
You may think you are giving constructive criticism. However your partner might think your love or respect for them has diminished because of this one little flaw they have. Instead of criticizing, encourage improvement by giving your partner some positive feedback when they do something you really like.
There, that does not sound too hard, does it? These techniques may be simple, but the really do work to solve communication problems in relationships. Give them a try.