5 Ways to Improve Communication in Your Relationship
If you notice a lull in your relationship, you may be reading a lot of articles focused on how to spice things up in the bedroom. However, if communication in your relationship is lacking, no amount of lingerie or sex tips will fix the problem. One way that will bring back some passion and heat back into your relationship is by focusing on effective communication with your spouse.
Set Aside Time to Give Each Other Undivided Attention
If you already have date nights, they’re a great time to try out going technology free for a night. You can also have a certain time of day that you get together without screens. Many people choose to have a screen-free dinner together, especially if you have children. It’s a great way to connect and find out what’s going on in each other’s lives.
Use “I” Statements
When you say “I feel,” rather than “you …” you turn the focus on yourself, making the other person feel less defensive. For instance, if your spouse accidentally spilled wine on your favorite white rug, you may get upset and say “You ruined my rug, you’re so thoughtless!” This leads to you feeling upset, and the other person feeling blamed, and defensive. Instead, use an “I” statement, such as “I was upset when I saw that the rug was stained because I can’t afford a new one.” This will not only let the other person know how you are feeling, but it allows you to reflect and understand why you are feeling a certain way, instead of shifting the blame.
Rephrase and Repeat Back Answers
Sometimes in a relationship, we think we’re communicating, but your spouse doesn’t necessarily hear what you think you said. When you’re having a conversation, especially about something important, rephrase and repeat back their answers to your questions to make sure you are both on the same page.
Pay Attention to Body Language
Pay attention to your partner’s body language, as well as your own. Make sure you are making eye contact that is not aggressive or threatening but lets your spouse know that you are listening and attentive. Turn towards each other, and hold hands or touch each other if you feel more connected that way.
Be Explicitly Clear
Many times in a relationship, you feel like the other person “should know” how you feel, what they did wrong, or why you are upset. This can lead to bad feelings on both sides. It’s important to not assume that the other person knows how you are feeling, or why. Passive-aggressive communications lead to resentment, anger, and feelings of isolation. Communicate clearly so that you can build a better relationship together.
If you feel like you and your partner are experiencing some disconnect, or that the spark is gone, try to go back to basics and work on effective communication. You may be surprised at how much it affects your relationship, and love life.