Communication can make or break even the strongest of couples. Making sure that you’re on the same page with your partner and expressing yourselves clearly is important because you need to be able to understand each other’s views and opinions even if you don’t necessarily agree with them. Here are a few things you can do right now to strengthen your relationship and improve your communication skills.
- Stop agreeing with everything they say. One of the worst things you can do in any relationship is to blindly agree with your partner at all times. You’re not a robot — you have your own thoughts and feelings about things. It’s normal to have a contrast in opinions, so instead of trying to ignore it, try embracing it for a change. Use these differences between you two and create discussions and debates on various topics. Try to see their side of things without shutting down your own feelings because both sides count for something. If your partner values you, they will appreciate you for speaking your own mind.
- Don’t expect them to know what you’re thinking. While it would be nice for your partner to read your mind at times to save you the effort of explaining how you feel, it’s not going to happen. Sometimes you have to speak up and make your feelings known, even when that’s not the easiest thing to do. Your partner won’t think any less of you for it. In fact, it should only prove to strengthen your relationship by creating a stronger bond.
- Don’t launch into an argument without thinking. It’s easy to get angry and say things that you don’t really mean, but that can potentially end a really good relationship. So before you mention something that’s bothering you to your partner, think about it carefully and decide the best way to approach it. Do you know why you’re angry? Is it because of something they did or is is just the way you’re interpreting it? So many arguments are caused by a misunderstanding, so make sure that you don’t start an argument with someone you love before you know the facts first.
- Tell them if you feel jealous without putting the blame on them. Don’t try to bury how you’re feeling because this will only cause you to distance yourself from your partner and cause resentment to grow. Instead, talk it out with them. Jealousy is so often caused by insecurity and fear of abandonment and you need to acknowledge that before you do anything else. Sure, it might make you feel uncomfortable that your partner has friends who they seem extra close with, but it’s not their fault that it’s making you feel bad about yourself. If you at least talk to them about it then you’ll feel better knowing that you had the courage to say what was on your mind instead of bottling it up. Your partner is there to listen to you when you need them, so they shouldn’t judge you for it.
- Choose the right words during and after an argument. One of the key pieces of good communication is understanding the other person’s feelings and accepting them. It’s not always necessary to agree on things, but there does have to be a level of acceptance that allows you to draw the line. You don’t want this to be a recurring argument, so to avoid that make sure you get to the root cause of what started the argument in the first place. Saying things like “you never listen to me” isn’t helpful and it will only make the argument escalate. Try saying things that could be constructive and make a difference to your relationship.
- Avoid talking over them. When you’re having a discussion or a heated debate about something, let them finish their sentence before you start making your point. Sometimes, you might do it without realizing it, but it can seem invalidating to your partner if it happens too often. They need to feel like their opinion counts for something too!
- Tell them what you need in the bedroom. If your partner really cares about your happiness, they won’t hide from this conversation. And if something isn’t working for you or your partner needs improving in an area, don’t be afraid to tell them. After all, if you’re not completely enjoying it, then what’s the point?
- Share little insights into your day. It’s natural to fall into this pattern of only talking about the important things that happen during the week. Some of your conversations might revolve around what you’re cooking for dinner or what you are going to watch on Netflix, and that’s when the relationship can get a bit dull. If you want to make the most of your time together and keep the spark around then you need to simply talk to each other more. What happened to you today? Anything interesting news about your job? Did you go out and enjoy a really nice coffee in a great new coffee shop? Your news might not seem too exciting, but your partner should have an interest in these things. Make sure you make an effort to ask about their day too, and ask them not to skim over it!