The fact that good communication is the most vital ingredient for a good relationship is so cliched and obvious, we dismiss it without ever really examining how we communicate with our partners. Well, cliches are cliches for a reason…they are true. If things are rocky between you and your partner or even if things are good and you are looking to make them better, chances are you could do some work in the communication department.
We can carry a lot of deep-seated feelings towards our partners for a variety of things they have done or have not done in the past. When we are having a disagreement about something in a particular moment in time, it is tempting to bring up past problems, old resentments, related issues, and a bunch of other stuff not relevant to now. If you are angry at your partner for not helping out with dinner more, keep it there; do not go into all your grievances about how he does not do enough around the house or equally participate in child rearing.
Whether or not what we feel is appropriate, inappropriate, right, wrong, silly, overexaggerated,etc… it is all legitimate. If you feel a certain way, you just do and by owning it, you can explore it more and work it out. On the same note, everything your partner feels is also legitimate and you must let her express herself. By honestly and openly communicating all we feel, without judging it, we take a very first important step in exploring our inner world more deeply and why we feel the way we feel. If we do not like it, this will help us change it.
Because our romantic partners often know us to a degree that other people do not, it is easy to assume that they always know what we are thinking or feeling, what we want to happen in a certain situation, what we would want them to do or not do. Assuming is dangerous and can hamper communication; we bubble with resentment and anger over situations, all the while, our partners may have no idea how we feel or that they have done something to anger us.
Often times, we may hold back on saying all we feel because we think we are being too harsh or it means broaching an uncomfortabl e subject between you and your partner, such as money. But, when we do not fully express everything we are feeling, we will never get to the root of the problems. You can be brutally honest without being brutal, of course. This does not mean a full license to just be cruel and take cheap shots, but rather, it is about getting it all out there, no matter how uncomfortable it might be.
How many arguments drag on and on because you are both looking for a ‘’winner?’’ You are both so firmly entrenched in your points of view that you just see the other as being completely wrong, no two ways about it. These types of disagreements are particulary burdensome and you need to decide if you want to be happy or if you want to be right. Really think about what you are fighting about..is it really a matter of right or wrong or do you just see things differently? Most of the time, it is the latter.
Kelli Cooper is a freelance writer who focuses on health, relationships and personal development. Visit http://www.everydayhowto.net/ for great information on relationships and lots of other topics.