Communication in a relationship is the key to relationship success. If we can communicate our needs and feelings and wishes effectively we are on the road to a happy healthy marriage. Our “relationship” can be as a married couple, committed couple, couple of friends, employer or employee, parent or child. Good communication will make your life much easier.
Changing a behavior is not easy. We have communicated in a certain way since birth. Changing that method of behavior may take concentration and time. The change could mean we become more effective in letting others know our needs and feelings.
Sometimes we learn behaviors in childhood, especially if we have had a difficult childhood, that help us to survive the childhood. We can acknowledge for ourselves the behaviors worked for us in childhood but are now getting in the way of relationship success.
Adopting a new way of communication can be tedious. If you went to the dentist and the dentist told you that the way you have brushed your teeth for years and years was all wrong. You are told “don’t brush up and down…..brush down down down on the top and up up up on the bottom.” Changing that method will mean you need to slow down and concentrate. At first the new behavior seems strange and difficult. After you practice for a while the new method becomes more and more familiar and soon it is as automatic as the old way.
If we learn to communicate in an effective way any issue can be resolved. This does not mean the resolution will be positive. It may mean when we resolve our issue it is revealed we are not happy with the relationship and need to move on.
If the communication is effective the chance of working through issues and making the relationship work is much higher. Sometimes couples come to see me for couples counseling and they have been having routine disagreements and arguments. Once they slow down and listen they begin to realize they are on the same page. They learn the concept of “different” not right and wrong. Couples communication is important for them to understand each other and create a happy marriage or relationship. Increasing your communication skills the foundation for successful marriage counseling.
If one of you has to be “right” and one “wrong” you are setting yourself up for failure. Think about agreeing to disagree. Think about allowing the other person a difference. Think about slowing down and really listening to your partner’s words and feelings. The formula for communication in this chapter will help you with that new behavior.
Communication is the key to letting others know how we feel and what are our needs.
Life Filters. We listen and talk through our “life filters”. Life filters are ways we learn to speak, listen, express anger, and other communication methods.
Here is a little story to help you understand “life filters”. John grew up in Sweden. When he graduated from college he moved to NY to work. He was there about six months before he became really really home sick.