Communication is an essential part in our daily human interaction, because through communication, we make our thoughts known. We co-exist with each other by constantly communicating with ourselves, whether we believe we are or not. The surprising thing is, we unconsciously communicate through nonverbals like body language and facial expressions, the tone of our voice and through our behavior. Relationships with people are prerequisite in the world because they form the basis and backbone of our interdependent network in which we depend on people daily for survival. Remember the shop attendant you met while buying groceries? You need him! That janitor who cleaned your office for you to work is also no exception. You need him to get your room in shape. But have you thought of the way you talk to him? Or he is just a janitor? The way we communicate with them goes a long way to influence our general outlook to life.  

In the world of dating, it is a stated fact that communication forms the framework of romantic relationships. Being able to communicate your opinion, and wants to your partner is an important skill everyone has to learn. 

Let’s delve straight into communication. Communication is simply the act of transferring information from one place, person or group to another. As though as communication may sound simple, it is a very complex subject. It always involves a sender, a message and a recipient. Our emotions and feelings play a role in affecting the transmission of this message we would want to send. Emotional awareness places us in that position to communicate our feelings better. Again, you will notice the subtle emotions of other people and how the way they are feeling influences the way they communicate. The complexity of communication is why good communication skills are considered desirable by employers all over the world. Accurate, effective and unarguably, good communication is actually extremely hard. 

The extent to which we maintain our close relationships determine how we protect ourselves against biological, environmental and interpersonal assaults. It is stated that poor communication skills are the largest contributor to conflict in a relationship. Thereby intimate and supportive relationships are an important factor in dealing with conflict. Working through the conflict unites people as they deal with problems and challenges together. Relationships in which people do not learn how to communicate will face issues when it comes to intimacy, conflict and relationship. An important part of communication is understanding the other person’s inner world and having them understand yours. This is pivotal to true communication. 

There are no perfect relationships, and obstacles come and go. Lack of communication in good relationships cannot be ignored, especially in situations where both parties know there is a problem with communication. Not listening can hurt a relationship because it tends to cause unresolved issues. Have you ever had a mate cut you off when you speak? This person wants to communicate without hearing your thoughts. This can be a problem which can be harmful to the relationship. 

The effects of poor communication on a relationship can threaten the existence of a relationship itself. The symptoms of communication breakdown include feeling like the other person is not listening, arguing constantly, acting defensively and feeling like nothing of substance is being said. Poor communication can chip away self-esteem and self-confidence. 

That being said, it is essential to understand the uniqueness of every relationship and build good relationships on trust, honesty, openness and mutual respect. Bear in mind, every relationship goes through ups and downs and they all take work, commitment and a willingness to adapt. Part of what defines a healthy relationship is sharing a common goal for exactly what you want the relationship to be and where you want it to go. That is something you will only know by talking deeply and honestly with your partner. The path to developing good productive, caring and supportive relationships is made by developing effective listening skills, probably the most important aspect of good interpersonal communication. Listening empathetically is important in terms of demonstrating an understanding of the other person’s point of view. 

Another aspect of relationship development is the ability to stay focused on your partner, on the present and on your feelings to find solutions of mutual benefit. Relationships are built on compromise therefore trying to be a winner in a relationship simply does not work. 

For most people, falling in love usually seems to just happen. It is staying in love – or preserving that “falling in love” experience – that requires commitment and work. Given its rewards, though, it’s worth the effort. A healthy, secure romantic relationship can serve as an ongoing source of support and happiness in your life. Through good ties, you could strengthen all aspects of your well-being. By taking steps to better your communication, you can build a meaningful relationship that lasts even for a lifetime. 

How to fix Communication problems in Relationships 

  1. Tell your partner what you need, don’t make them guess 

Many of us don’t spend enough time finding out what is really important to us in a relationship. Even if you do know what you need, talking about it can make you feel embarrassed, or even ashamed. If you have known each other for a while, you may assume that your partner has a pretty good idea of what you are thinking or what you need. But this is wrong. It is much healthier to express your needs directly to avoid any confusion. 

2. Take note of your partners nonverbal cues 

So much of our communication is transmitted by what we don’t say. Non verbal cues which include eye contact, tone of voices and gestures such as crossing arms communicate much more than words. When you can pick up on your partner’s body language, you will be able to respond accordingly for the relationship to work effectively. 

3. Be a good listener 

While a great deal of emphasis is placed on talking, if you can learn to listen in a way that makes another person feel valued and understand, you can build a deeper, stronger connection between you. When you listen, you are engaged with what is being said. You hear the subtle intonations in your partner’s voice that tells you how they are really feeling and the emotions they are trying to communicate. Been a good listener doesn’t mean you have to agree with your partner or change your mind. But it will help you find common points of view that can help you to resolve conflict. 

Understanding more about communication and how it works is the first step to improving your communication skills with your partner. A good understanding of the process will help you to ensure that you become adept at understanding your partner and resolve any conflicts amicably. 

Good communication is just as stimulating as black coffee, and just as hard to sleep after – Anne Morrow Lindbergh

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