Being able to have good communication skills for couples is vital to the health of the relationship. But being able to communicate is a lot more than talking and listening. It also means that each person needs to uphold the right attitudes as well. If you do not have the right attitudes then emotions could affect the relationship in an adverse way. This in turn can lead to conflict and even the loss of love.
Complaints are typical in any relationship but most often these complaints are not presented with empathy. Instead they are given in a way that makes the other person go on the defense and then this can cause an immediate break down of communication. The only way to give a complaint with empathy is that the one who is making the complaint must do it in a way that is not judgmental and with no intention of hurting anyone. Then the person listening should then react in a less reactive or defensive manner.
Before considering addressing your complaint to your spouse or partner it is probably a good idea to approach them and ask them if the present time would be good to discuss a concern you have. If it turns out that it is not, then ask them if there would be a better time that they could devote to the discussion. The last thing that you want is for your partner to be distracted because of something else they feel they need to be doing.
When you have decided on a time to discuss matters the last thing you want to do is to bring a whole list of your complaints to the table. It is important to only focus on one current problem that concerns you. If you bring a long laundry list of issues you are doomed to having communication shut down immediately.
Focus on your feelings that directly relate to your concern or complaint. Allowing your partner to visualize how something they do makes you feel emotionally. One example would be if you are tired of them being late, the judgmental way of approaching it would be to say I feel it is very inconsiderate of you to not call when you are going to be late. However the more empathetic way would be to put it more like this When you are late and do not give me a call I feel worried and concerned about you.
Another thing to remember is that your goal is to be heard without making them feel like you are trying to make them fix the problem right then and there. Making them feel pressured is like you are demanding that they come up with an immediate solution. Allow them the chance to think about the things you have said. This will often get them to easily offer suggestions for solutions.
You also need to listen when it comes to communication. Listening and not being defensive yourself is going to be key to great communication. If you are the one receiving the complaint listen and understand communicating is not about who is right or wrong but about understanding each others concerns.
The key to good communication skills for couples is their willingness to let each partner speak while the other one listens. No one likes to be interrupted especially if they need their feelings to be heard.
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