Many surveys find that the number one reason for divorce is poor communication. Beyond having different communication styles, issues often arise when both partners are not comfortable talking about their feelings.
The good news is, talking about feelings is not the only, or even necessarily the best, way for couples to maintain a happy and healthy relationship.
Here are some ideas to improve communication in your relationship:
Small Talk Offers Big Gains
The truth is small talk can positively impact communication even more than a discussion about feelings. Many couples find it easier to reconnect over the mundane events of life rather than during a serious conversation, most likely because they each feel safer in the ordinary.
The key is to engage during these small talk sessions. Be interested and curious. Ask questions. By doing this, you let your partner know they matter and you care. In the end, life is woven together by strings of insignificant incidents.
A recent study published in Psychological Science found that partner feels closer to each other when discussing shared experiences. For instance, many sour=ces can come together when talking about their children, particularly if they remember happy moments.
A second study published in Psychological Science uncovered something exciting. It turns out that words are not even necessary for shared experiences to improve relationships. Silent communication from enjoying an experience can also heal. Doing something together like riding bikes, going to a movie on date night, or even shopping for new furniture can help you reconnect.
Balance Asking and Offering
Good communication is a dance where we take turns leading. This means sometimes you need to offer up the information and share something about yourself. It could be something as simple as what happened to you yesterday on your journey home from work.
Other times, let your partner share what they want. Be sure to ask questions and listen to the answers. If you don’t understand something they have said, ask for clarification. This is a beautiful way to show them you care and are fully engaged.
These communication ideas are deceptively simple, but don’t let their simplicity fool you. If you use these techniques, you will find your skills improve, and your relationship deepens. Moreover, if you feel you need more help in the communication department, seek guidance from a trained couples counsellor. If you and your loved one would like to explore more communication skills, please do not hesitate to contact me today.