It's well known that communication is an important part in every healthy relationship. How far-grasping this topic actually is, and how to communicate the right way in order to obtain a functioning relationship, you will understand after reading this article.
First, I will explain why communication plays such a big role. Notice that I'm focussing on romantic relations:
Everyone knows that having trust in each other is one of the must-haves to build a stable relationship. Building trust is strongly connected to providing an effective communication system. The very first phase of dating is merely physical attraction. Then comes total infatuation, what is also referred to as the honeymoon phase or the 'really-falling-in-love-phase'. That phase can last any length of time and can be different according to the people involved in the relationship. But after some time the first conflicts will start emerging and concern will occur. To fully master this stage and go on to the forth stage, which is responsibility and trust, communication is the only way.
It's essential for a relationship to create a space where you can openly share feelings and thoughts. To assure your partner that he/she can feel safe and supported, communication is necesarry. It's easier for you to share things in your life, when you become closer which you can only if you talk openly with each other, learing about your partner's views and thoughts. That's also why in the first stages of dating, we want to keep talking for HOURS, we want to get to know them in every aspect.
3.Wants and needs
In order to move forward in your relationship, communication is certainly needed. Along the way, you will probably face various problems, one of them being that you feel you can´t express what you feel, you can´t perfectly convey your love which may lead to expecting too much from one another. Therefore it's important to make yourself clear: In terms of feelings, thoughts, conflicts, your needs and not to forget, your wants for the future. If both of you know, through effective conversations, what you expect from each other and what you want in life, you can either part before making choices you will regret or maintain a healthy relationship.
Now, how can you improve communication in a romantic relationship? We know that we shouldn't interrupt someone and we should express our thoughts as respectfully as possible, but what characterises a healthy and effective communication system in depth?
According to communication psychologist Friedemann Schulz von Thun, every message has four different sides to it (1981)
1.Fact; mere information I convey
2.Self-displaying; what I reveal about myself
3.Affinity; what I think about the person I'm talking to
4.Desire/Appeal; an attempt to influence the person I'm talking to
These facades can be interpreted through tone, body language or the content itself while talking.
Marshall B. Rosenberg (Psychologist and founder of Center For Nonviolent Communication) points out that the following steps are to be considered for a positive result of your conversation:
First, try to communicate your observations without interpreting them in any way. Say, your boyfriend has been coming late from work for a week now, without any further information: he comes late, that is all. Buying into an interpretation, such as: he comes late because he is seeing someone else, often ends in a disaster.
It's extremly important to communicate your emotions. Remember that feelings are never necessarily the same as thoughts, so you may be talking about your thoughts with your loved one, but not about your feelings. Arguments often develop from hidden emotions or the lack of expressing such.
As already mentioned above, it's substantial for a relationship to declare one's needs. By doing this in a polite manner you give the opposite a chance to decide whether they can or are willing to (further) enter this relationship. You could say that you want to be treated with respect and devotion, or more explicitly for instance: that you definitley want children. This is just an example, describe your needs according to you.
The fourth step is making a clear request. What do your needs (mentioned above) mean explicitly? It's like coming to an conclusion after having gone through the steps above. In the case of the example with your boyfriend coming late from work for a week, you could simply say: "I would like to know why you come home later than usual." With the justification, that you want to be treated with consideration, for instance. Rosenberg claims this step to be "simple but not easy". There's no way around it to make a relationship work though. Keep in mind that a request isn't a demand!
Good and effective communication is the key to connect with people and have positive social interactions, whether you're in a relationship or not. It's proven that misunderstandings, doubt, faithlessness and mistrust in relationships are often created by a lack of communication and fail because of that.
But now that you are informed, all that remains is to apply it!
© 2021 Monicawilson
dashingscorpio from Chicago on May 27, 2021:
It's also important to understand communication is not an "ask and it shall be given proposition". Just because your partner doesn't give you what you've asked for doesn't mean there is a "communication problem".
Communication is nothing more than someone expressing a thought and having the other person acknowledge they heard and understood what you said.
Ultimately you have to decide if not getting what you want is a "deal breaker".
Over time we're either "growing together" or "growing apart".
Honest communication is the GPS for relationships that tells us which direction we're heading in.
There is no amount of "communication" or "work" which can overcome being with someone who does (not) want what you want.
There are only two ways to experience joy and peace of mind in relationships. We either get what we want or we learn to be happy with what we have. Accept them (as is) or move on. The choice is up to us.
No one is "stuck" with anyone. Suffering is optional.
"Never love anyone who treats you like you're ordinary."
- Oscar Wilde