Somewhere along our relationship we start expecting our partner to be able to read our minds and know exactly what we feel and what we want. Most of us are unaware we are even doing this. Many times though we will get upset our partner did something, or we think our partner should “know better” when of course he or she is oblivious to the situation. What happens is instead of being happy and loving towards each other, we begin harboring feelings of resentment and distance. Since it’s unlikely any of us can learn to read minds, instead I’ll share with you some tips on communicating better with your partner.
Next time it seems like your partner is “just not getting it”, you may want to try a few of these simple, yet effective techniques in communicating your feelings to your partner:
1. Choose a time to talk that is quiet and without distractions or interruptions. Turn off the phone, the tv, your computer, or anything else that might interrupt you in the middle of expressing your thoughts.
2. Tell your partner exactly how you feel in clear terms. Don’t say “I’m tired” and expect your partner to know that means you want him or her to help you with something. You need to be as detailed and as accurate as possible in your description of your feelings or expectations.
3. Maintain direct eye contact. Eye contact shows your partner you are actively listening. It also makes it clear that you are serious about communicating and saying something that is important. Looking at the floor or the wall or ceiling does not show you are interested or what you are talking about is important.
4. Don’t be afraid to ask for what you want. Sometimes telling someone what you want or need is not enough. You will have to ask sometimes, too.
5. Remember to not act condescendingly or assign blame. You’re not starting an argument – you’re communicating. Before you begin your discussion, you may want to check out our article on effective ways to argue.
Following these 5 simple techniques will help you and your partner communicate more effectively and make your relationship stronger when the two of you know exactly what each other want and need.