Lack of communication can lead to misunderstandings, emotional distance, feelings of contempt, etc. When you are open and honest with your spouse, speak up respectfully when you feel hurt, and are excited to listen about what your partner has to say, there is usually little room for misunderstandings that can lead to negative feelings in a relationship.
Tips for Healthy Communication and Couples Healing
- Move the focus from yourself and your perspective. Oftentimes in an argument or discussion, we want to say our piece and explain why we think we are right. It is important to remember that your partner may have a completely different perspective than you, and that different perspective can explain why they may disagree with you.
- Pause your own agenda for a bit. Forget about what your goal was going into this discussion for a moment, and take a minute to truly listen. What is it that your spouse wants? How can you reach your goals together?
- Be genuinely interested in your partner’s perspective. Allowing your partner time to talk does not mean that you were truly listening. Ask questions about what they may be saying. Make sure you fully understand where they are coming from and why they have the opinion or perspective that they do.
- Don’t assume anything. You probably think you have a good idea about why your partner has a certain perspective. Put aside your preconceived assumptions and let them explain why they have the opinion that they do.
- Hear the feelings underneath what your partner is sharing with you. Try to understand what feelings and emotions are present while they are speaking with you. Do your best to understand the entirety of what they are sharing