It is often said that good communication is the key to a successful relationship.
Now an American psychologist has gone a step further to reveal the three conversation styles you should try to avoid if you want your partnership to remain a triumph.
Dr. Carmen Harra, author of Committed: Finding Love and Loyalty Through the Seven Archetypes, told FEMAIL that “effective communication shouldn’t be complicated, but most couples complain about a lot of problems.”
She continued: ‘The best step you can take to resolve issues in your relationship is to change the way you talk about it; by dealing differently with challenging situations, the course can completely change.’
That’s why the psychologist here reveals three of the biggest communication mistakes that ruin good relationships – and how best to avoid them…
Dr. Carmen Harra, author of Committed: Finding Love and Loyalty Through the Seven Archetypes, told FEMAIL how “effective communication shouldn’t be complicated, but most couples complain about a lot of problems” (stock photo)
Mistake 1: interrogation
“If we want to have a serious conversation with our partner, we tend to bombard them with all our questions and concerns as soon as they walk through the door,” the expert suggested.
Not only does this frustrate the other person, but it’s also a highly ineffective way to communicate your needs.
“Jumping from topic to topic, or berating them about things that don’t pose serious problems, only tarnishes the more valid points you’re trying to make.
“It’s human nature to accuse when you’re being accused, even if that person is outright guilty. If you speak aggressively, your partner will respond in the same way, which can quickly escalate a misunderstanding into all-out war.”
Try this instead: ‘Wait for your loved one to settle down and then gently open up to a topic that really matters.
“You may have a tendency to address everything at once, but it’s best to stick to one topic.
“You get to deal with all the crucial points on time, so start with the most urgent. Your partner is more receptive if you have a comfortable, noncombatant conversation,” explains Dr. Carmen.
She added, “Also, don’t forget to listen when your partner opens up to you. Hearing and listening are two separate arts; you may hear what they are saying (or you may be so upset that you don’t want to hear anything they have to say), but are you really listening to their thoughts and opinions?
“Many people have trouble expressing their emotions, and only by really paying attention can you take in the deeper meaning of your partner’s words and work towards a solution.”
“If we want to have a serious conversation with our partner, we tend to bombard them with all our questions and concerns as soon as they walk through the door,” the expert suggested (stock photo)
Mistake 2: Talking about them instead of with them
Dr. Carmen said, ‘External influences are like weeds infesting a thriving band. Without wanting to, we invite all kinds of energy into our relationship: family, friends and even enemies play a role in the dynamics we share with our partner.
“Become aware of who and what is interfering with your relationship. Doing things like hanging up on your partner during a disagreement and then calling your friend to complain about him is not only an ill-advised choice, it’s also a major communication error. You and your partner are in a relationship, not your friend, sibling, parent or other outside party.
“Recognize how your ego influences your dialogues. Focusing only on “me” when you talk – like constantly saying “you hurt me” or “you did this to me” – discourages progress and creates tension. A heightened ego is a destructive force in any relationship.”
Try this instead: “Keep your relationship exclusive and guard your privacy, and promise to talk to each other instead of about each other.
“That includes focusing on ‘we’ instead of ‘me’ during conversations and letting your proud guard down.
“Even if your partner has done something irrefutably wrong, it is more beneficial for both of you to look for good faith rather than guilt.
“Ask questions like, “How do you think we can fix this? or “How can we prevent this from happening again?” Hold each other closer to your heart than your egos, and you will succeed in maintaining healthy, long-lasting love,” the psychologist claimed,
Mistake #3: Lashing out when you’re desperate
“A fight often arises because one or both partners have reached desperate boundaries; bickering stems from dissatisfaction that has never been resolved,” explains the expert.
“When we experience extreme emotions, our thoughts become disorganized and we forget to filter our words.
“This leads us to say things we don’t mean and which we will probably regret later. Yelling and fighting diminish the power and authenticity of your words, and speaking up when you’re at your wit’s end can mean the end of your relationship.”
Try this instead: “Meditate and soften your emotions first. Meditation helps you access your higher self, where all solutions are available to you.
“Think about what would happen if you approached the situation with more calmness and logic and planned the points you’re going to make in advance. What can you say to reach agreement?
“Make sure you and your partner’s emotions are stable before you get into a topic you’re eager to discuss.
“You may want to get things off your mind right now, but you have to respect your crush’s timing or the conversation won’t turn out the way you want it to.
Know when to have serious conversations and when to wait. If your partner is in a compromised mood because they just got some bad news, hold off for a few hours or even a few days.
But if he shows emotional vulnerability, seize the moment: take advantage of the moments when he’s sensitive, impartial, and loving. These are the best times to raise delicate issues and get favorable responses,” emphasized Dr Carmen.