Good communication is the cornerstone of happy relationships. Learn how to talk and listen successfully
We all know good communication is at the heart of every good relationship. Whether it has been a wonderful or a rotten day, whether there has been a crisis or a triumph, sharing it in words makes you and your partner feel more understood, more appreciated, more loved. The ability to communicate well is the most important relationship skill of all.
Here are five foolproof lessons to help you both talk and listen effectively and conquer bad communication habits for good.
Lesson One: listen well
Though you probably listen to your partner a lot, do you listen effectively? Half-hearted attention, with one eye on the kids or the television, is often worse than not listening at all because it comes across as if you are not interested. Instead:
- Set aside ten or twenty minutes with each other every day to ‘update’. If you have a busy life, it can seem like time wasted, but make sure concerns are aired and you understand each other. It really can avoid problems down the line.
- When you are listening, aim to make your partner the centre of attention. Turn to him, look at him, and put other thoughts aside until he is finished speaking.
- Use positive body language to acknowledge what he is saying with a nod or a smile. He will feel appreciated and therefore more likely to listen to you.
- To show you have listened, repeat back what you have heard or ask a focused question. This shows him you understand and sympathise. [Read more…] about Are You Communicating Effectively in Your Relationship? Part 1