Why communication is key to healthy relationships

It goes without saying that communication is vital in any relationship.

After all, without communication, the vast majority of relationships fail to work. It’s important to tell your partner, family and friends how you’re thinking and feeling.

Communication is not only paramount for growth, it is also essential for building a long-lasting and fulfilling relationships.

Why is communication important in a relationship?

Communication is important in any relationship, as it allows you to effectively share feelings, opinions and expectations. Many people fail to communicate due to a fear of rejection or the fear that they’ll end up upsetting or even losing their partner, family members or friends.

Here are just some reasons which highlight the importance of communication in relationships:

Get to know each other

The key to determining whether you’re compatible with another person is to communicate with them from the offset. From understanding their likes and dislikes through to gaining an insight into their morals and values, open and frequent communication is essential if you want to really get to know someone and allow them to know the real you.

Avoid misunderstanding

Another reason to communicate effectively is to avoid any misunderstandings, which can lead to a breakdown of communication or the relationship as a whole.

With this in mind, always say what you’re feeling. Express your opinions and don’t be afraid to debate in order to reach a compromise for certain situations if you feel strongly about them.

Set clear expectations

We all have different expectations in life. In any relationship, it’s important that these expectations are made clear from the offset, to avoid one party upsetting the other without realising. Always be open and honest and never be afraid to stand by what you believe in. Once expectations are set, you should be able to enjoy a healthy, positive and satisfying relationship.

How to improve communication in a relationship

If you want to improve communication in your relationships, consider the following:

  • Always talk about important or sensitive issues face-to-face
  • Be open and honest
  • Find the right time for important conversations
  • Don’t be abusive or verbally aggressive, even if it’s an emotive issue
  • Use positive body language

If something is bothering you, take the time have a conversation about it - bottling up your feelings or brushing an issue under the carpet can end up causing more harm than good.

Keep in mind that not everyone is good at expressing how they feel, so approach conversations in a calm and relaxed way, in a quiet environment where both parties are comfortable. If you both have busy lifestyles, setting time aside to talk can really help! This also means that you’ll have time to process your thoughts and even write down the points you want to cover.

Don’t communicate via text

Although some people find it incredibly difficult to say what they want to say face-to-face, you should never approach a serious subject or start an argument via text message. Text messages can be interpreted in lots of different ways and as such, they’re often misunderstood, making a potentially volatile situation ten times worse.

Choose your language carefully

A lot of the time, our choice of words can be perceived as being defensive, especially if words such as “you” are constantly used during a conversation. So instead, make a conscious effort to use words such as “I” or “we”. After all, the last thing you want is for your partner, family member or friend to feel under attacked.

Examples of bad communication in relationships

If you’re trying to improve the communication in your relationships, it can help to understand examples of good and bad communication. Here are some examples of poor communication:

  • Belittling each other
  • Openly giving the cold shoulder
  • Becoming defensive in heated discussions
  • Assuming you know what the other person is thinking
  • Arguments that are never resolved and brushed under the carpet
  • Inability to compromise
  • Few attempts to connect

Examples of good communication in relationships

Here are some example of good communication in relationships:

  • Giving your partner, friend or family member your full attention
  • Giving each other space when needed
  • Face-to-face communication
  • Honesty and openness
  • 24- hour rule – never sleep on an argument
  • Talk about the little things in life

To find out more about maintaining healthy relationships and effective strategies for communication, please get in touch.