A Guide to Building Strong Relationships
Studies on marriage have revealed that the happiest married partners exhibit positive interactions with one another at a 5-1 ratio as compared to negative ones.
Thus, these pairs have five times the number of positive exchanges or behaviors with one another than negative ones. These could include validation of the other individual, showing appreciation, affirming the other person's emotions, actively listening and the like. Negative interactions could involve yelling, complaining or giving voice to feelings of anger.
How To Boost Communication Quality Within A Relationship
Take the time to consciously engage in conversation with each other. A typical couple has only 20 minutes weekly of actual talking together. Switch off the phones and the television and focus on having 20-30 minutes of quality discussion each and every day.
Consciously use a greater number of "I" sentences and fewer "you" statements. This way, your spouse is less likely to be put on the defensive. An example would be to say "I wish you had a greater appreciation for all of the household tasks I do."
Specificity is important. If an issue rears its head, speak plainly about it. Do not make sweeping generalizations or accusatory statements that are imprecise, because that will get you nowhere.
Constructively convey negative emotions. In every marriage, there will be moments of disappointment, frustration and sadness. It is necessary for such feelings to be expressed so that their causes can be addressed. The key, however, is expressing them effectively. Saying you are disappointed by a partner's decision in a given realm of life is far better than suggesting that the decision represents a total lack of concern for the union.
Engage in listening, but avoid becoming defensive. Successful marriages require both partners to hear the feelings of the other without jumping to an immediate defensive stance. This is a difficult task, but a critical one.
Do not hold back when it comes to expressing positive thoughts and emotions. Affirmation goes a long way toward creating contented spouses and helps according to experts in marriage counseling.
Displays of respect, appreciation, approval and love are essential gestures in any health and enduring marriage. Try to make five such expressions to every single negative one that sneaks into your life. When you compliment more regularly than you criticise, your legitimate concerns will be taken far more seriously when they are expressed. However, if your discourse is usually heavy on the negative, it is highly possible that your complaints will be disregarded.