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How to reduce conflict and build better relationships

10 Ways to Improve Marriage Communication

23 Feb Many popular magazines and websites offer various bullet-lists on how to improve your marriage through better "communication." The same venues regularly feature weight loss bullet-lists. You probably know the research findings about the latter - they range from unhelpful to damaging. Research would. 16 Aug Try these tips for improving the communication in your marriage. For example, “ I wish you would acknowledge more often how much work I do at home to take care of you and the children. For a marriage to succeed, both spouses must be able to hear each other's complaints without getting defensive. Men and women have very specific communication styles. Rather than building a marriage on mind reading and the guessing game; when couples learn to truly communicate, they can know each other's needs and happily work together to fulfill them.

We were blissfully in love and thrilled to be on our honeymoon. Then came day five—we had our first argument.

When in doubt, ask

That put us on a slippery slope moving swiftly toward desperation. Within the first nine months of our marriage, Gina and I were both convinced that we not only married the wrong person, but also were condemned to a loveless marriage. One very tangible side effect of our difficulties was poor communication.

10 Ways to Improve Marriage Communication - All Pro Dad : All Pro Dad

I would ask, "What's for dinner? She would say, "What time are you coming home? We could not express anything we wanted to. We resorted to hurting each other with our words. We did not build each other up … we tore each other down and caused deep, emotional pain.

Quite honestly, we had endured so much hurt that we not see any hope for ever communicating well.

Ways To Improve Communication In A Marriage

Our despair was overwhelming. In counseling we began learning about intentional communication. I remember thinking, "That is the stupidest thing I've ever heard.

This stuff is so simple … I can't believe I'm paying this guy for this. But, once I got off of my high horse, I realized something very simple yet profound: If communication was really that simple, everyone would be doing it and all of our communication would glorify God and reflect His image 1 Peter 4: Glorifying God did not describe my communication, and it may not describe yours either.

In fact, many of us struggle to communicate well even with those we love the most: The road I took to learn about communication was a tough one.

Here are some of the tools that helped transform my marriage and change my heart. The Principle of First Response: The course of a conflict is not determined by the person who initiates, but by the person who responds.

Pray regularly as a family prior to eating. Neither do men, for that matter. Take time to pause Although it can be difficult to do in the heat of the moment, taking the time to listen during a heated spousal showdown is key to communicating well. Anticipate your battles; fight them on your knees before temptation comes, and you will always have victory. Research would likely show similar effects for any communication techniques that can be expressed in bullet-lists.

You may feel it's okay to strike at someone verbally because, "He is picking a fight with me. That power rests with the responder.

Ways To Improve Communication In A Marriage

Jesus has a well-worn track record with the Principle of First Response. Recall the times that the Scribes and the Pharisees came to question Him. They were the initiators in nearly all of their communication.

Their intention was to defraud Jesus and corner Him. In how many cases were they successful? They failed because the power to decide the direction of each conflict rested with Jesus, the responder Luke The implications of following Jesus' example were huge. My wife's sin did not give me free license to sin in return. And conversely, my sin did not give Gina free license either.

By following the principle of first response, we were being called to take a poorly spoken comment and redirect it. The Principle of Physical Touch: It is difficult to sin against someone while you are tenderly touching him or her. You know what those topics are in your marriage. Maybe click to see more a conversation about a specific child. Maybe it's your in-laws or your finances.

For us, as you might imagine, it was when we sat down to talk about our communication. Those were tough conversations. During these times, we would sit down and pray together … and touch. Usually we were at opposite ends of the couch with Gina's legs stretched out across mine while I held them.

You may prefer holding hands or sitting close enough that you naturally touch. As we talked, we would inevitably notice something. When our conversation began to drift toward conflict, we stopped touching.

We found what I'm certain you'll find: It is very difficult to fight with someone you are tenderly touching. So, we had a choice at that point: This type of tender touching has served us in two ways. First, it is a deterrent from arguing. Second, when we do drift into an argument, our physical separation is a visual and physical cue that our conversation is no this web page glorifying God.

We notice it, correct it, and get back on the right track. The Principle of Proper Timing: The success of a conversation can be maximized if the timing of the conversation is carefully chosen. The book of Proverbs tells us, "A man finds joy in giving Ways To Improve Communication In A Marriage apt reply—and how good is a timely word! Typically, the first opportunity Gina and I have to talk about the day is at dinner. We Ways To Improve Communication In A Marriage take time then to catch up.

With four young children, our dinner table is an active and busy one. Consequently, we cannot practically have an extended and meaningful conversation. So, if something has occurred that I must discuss with Gina, I will wait until the children are asleep.

To bring it up during dinner is to invite frustration and ineffectiveness.

You do need to emotionally connect with your partner. When your husband takes the time to ask if you are ok, he is showing his love and concern for you. Communication in marriage is however a very common problem for a lot of couples and yes, most of them know how to communicate, and still give it as the reason for conflict in their marriages. The goal is not merely to understand your partner or make yourself understood by your partner; it's to manipulate him or her into doing what you want. This however must not be mechanical.

Gina is a very intentional homemaker and often has wonderful ideas on how to better serve our family. Let's say she is contemplating a new approach to family dining.

She's been thinking through this for weeks and she's now ready to get my input. This is a very good thing—but probably not at 1: I'm also prone to fall into the poor timing trap.

For example, Gina and I could be downstairs enjoying normal conversation. We head upstairs at As the lights go out, I ask, "What do you think God is doing with the children?

There are times when a conversation is critical to have at that very moment. In those cases, of course, the football game goes off and we talk.

Or, the lights go back on and we're up until 2 a. However, those should be the exceptions rather than the rule. The majority of the time, we should be more strategic in the timing of our conversations. Are you a "share your feelings" type of communicator or "Just the facts?

Find out which one you are! The Principle of Mirroring: Understanding can be enhanced if we measure it often throughout a conversation. The Scriptures inform us that, if we are to understand and become wise, we must be sure to incline click here ears.

Have you ever meant one thing by what you said but the person you were talking to heard something else? It can make for very frustrating communication. If you're not sure if your spouse Ways To Improve Communication In A Marriage getting what you're talking about, check to see if you hear this phrase a lot: Mirroring can help you test whether you are hearing your spouse properly.

Once your spouse makes a point … repeat it to him or her. Say something like this: Then, the most important part of mirroring comes. You must allow your spouse to either affirm or correct what you've said. As we learned this principle, I often didn't like Gina's negative or inaccurate summaries of my statements.

Relationship Advice: The Keys to Effective Communication (Coach G)

So, I defended them and failed to allow her the freedom to speak honestly. In time, I learned that her summaries actually were quite accurate; my reactions were negative because I didn't like how they exposed me.

The point of mirroring is not to be right, not to defend yourself, but to know that you are hearing accurately. If you seek to understand rather than to make yourself click, then you are primed for success with the principle of mirroring.

The Principle of Prayer: Success in communication is more likely when we invite God to be an active participant and guide. This principle is not complicated, but it requires our close attention. We've become so accustomed to hearing about prayer that its importance often passes us by. No matter what principle you might be using at the time or what subject you might be talking about, no scenario is beyond prayer.