Communication is the backbone of relationships. Without effective communication, there are unanswered questions, frustration, and a void between you and your significant other. Just like other skills, improving your communication skills takes practice. Even if you do not think of yourself as a strong communicator, there is always room to improve.
Here are 5 ways to improve the communication between you and your love.
1.) Look at each other when speaking to each other
This seems simple, but sometimes we are doing everything BUT looking at each other. We are checking our phones, on our laptop, making dinner, folding laundry, etc. Making eye contact shows affirmation that you are hearing what your partner is saying and are thoroughly listening. I will admit, more times than not, I have been distracted and have pretended to listen to my boyfriend while multi-tasking. I know this deeply frustrates him and is something that I am always trying to work on.
2.) Stop getting the last word
Sometimes during an argument, you just have to give in for the sake of holding your relationship together. By nature, we are selfish human beings who always want to be right. The truth is, you are NOT always right. And even if you are during an argument, at times we need to know when to throw the towel in. Admit you were wrong or bite your tongue. You don’t always have to have the last word. This infuriates your partner more and will not help your cause.
3.) Use words of affirmation
What exactly are words of affirmation? They are using words to express your love and describe how you feel. Saying encouraging words to your partner can go a long way. Compliment your partner. When you appreciate something they’ve done for you, tell them so. Relationships should not be complicated. Be straightforward, speak in a kindly tone, and mean what you say. A relationship should consist of two people constantly working to better each other. Lift your partner up and encourage them to reach their full potential instead of putting them down. Say things like, “Thank you for making me coffee this morning. I was in a rush and you really helped me out. I love you.” Back to the basics, people. You can never go wrong with simplicity!
4.) Use “I” statements
This is very important. Listen carefully. When you are upset with each other, don’t play the blame game. Use “I” statements to express your anger or frustration. Example. Instead of saying, “You really piss me off! You always leave your muddy shoes on the carpet!!” Instead try saying, “I feel frustrated when mud gets tracked on the carpet after I’ve worked hard cleaning all weekend.” Using the word “you” automatically places blame and sets a negative tone. Using “I” shows that you are an equal partner in this relationship and you are willing to work on the problem together as a team.
5.) Communicate throughout the day
I don’t mean to call each other five times at work and bombard your boyfriend’s phone with text messages all day. Rather, send your lover a quick email on your lunch break such as, “Hope you’re having a great day, honey! Love you!” Or, give your spouse a call on your way home from work and ask what he needs at the grocery store. Simple, quick messages like that show your partner that you are thinking of them even during a busy work day. Couples who communicate like this during the day claim to feel more closely connected and have stronger relationships overall than those who go the whole day without speaking to each other.
I also highly recommend reading this book, The 5 Love Languages: The Secret to Love that Lasts. It will greatly help you find your “love” style, thus helping you keep your relationship fresh and growing amid the demands and conflicts of life.
Do you have any other suggestions you would like to add to improve communication in your romantic relationship? I’d love to hear in the comments below.
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