Communication is key when it comes to a successful and healthy relationship. When a relationship is in trouble, it is often the result of poor communication.
We have many different types of relationships in our lives like partners, children, family, coworkers, friends, etc. It’s important to maintain healthy relationships with everyone in our lives, especially those that are nearest and dearest to our hearts – our children and our partner. Keep reading for 5 tips for improving communication in your relationships so you can thrive and have successful communication skills.
1. Give Undivided Attention
One of the easiest things you can do to improve communication with anyone in your life is to give them your undivided attention. We know how hard it is to put your phone down when you’re scrolling through the latest Instagram Reels or watching the Chiefs, but it’s crucial to do so. Our loved ones want our undivided attention especially if there’s a strain in the relationship. For both parties to effectively communicate, they both need to put away all distractions and speak to one another in a quiet environment. By giving undivided attention, you’ll be able to listen and respond better than if you were distracted.
2. Actively Listen
Another way to improve communication with your loved ones is to actively listen. It’s easy to hear what someone is saying, but do you truly listen to what they are saying? Hearing is when you’re taking in the sounds in your environment. Active listening, however, is when you’re paying attention and focusing on everything someone is saying.
To actively listen, be sure there are no distractions so you can give your undivided attention. Next, make eye contact. Looking someone in the eyes helps them understand that you’re listening to what they’re saying and are paying attention to how they feel. If you’re communicating with your children, getting down on their level will help them know you’re actively listening and will make them feel more open to communicating with you. Be cognizant of your body language as well and give affirming feedback, such as nodding your head or smiling.
3. Don’t Interrupt
You know that feeling when you’re speaking to someone and they cut you off to add their two cents to the conversation? It’s frustrating, isn’t it? When you’re having communication issues in your relationships the last thing you want to do to someone is to interrupt them. While you’re actively listening, keep all comments and responses to yourself until the other person is done speaking or if they ask for your input. By not interrupting, the other person will feel like you’re truly listening.
4. Think Before You Speak
We know it sounds easier said than done, but thinking before you speak to someone especially after a heated discussion can drastically improve communication in every relationship in your life. Whether you’re speaking to your children, partner, or family member, processing your emotions before speaking can make all the difference. When we act on emotions then we’re more likely to hurt someone’s feelings or say something we don’t truly mean. Try going for a walk or simply leaving the room for a moment to gather your thoughts and destress before you respond based on negative emotions.
5. Work Toward a Resolution
How many times have you been in a discussion where the conversation just seems to go in a circle and it goes nowhere? Working toward a resolution will help all parties involved and will allow everyone to say what they need to say while working toward a goal.
By following these 5 tips you’ll see an improvement in the relationships in your life. Communication is key when it comes to successful and healthy relationships. There are plenty of resources available for those who are wanting to improve their communication skills from workshops to therapy.
Unfortunately, some marriages do fail and it can be hard to co-parent when you need to effectively communicate with your former spouse. If you’re currently going through or are on the brink of a divorce or if you’re searching for a child custody attorney, the family law attorneys at The Law Office of Young, Kuhl & Frick, LLC can help. We’re dedicated to the practice of family law and can help guide you through any family law matter keeping your best interests in mind. With over fifty-four years of combined legal experience, our family law firm is comprised of a team that’s skilled in both negotiation and litigation, handling family law matters from the most complex to the most straightforward.
We have offices in Lee’s Summit, Missouri, and Leawood, Kansas (consultations by appointment only). In addition to our two physical locations, our firm’s family and divorce attorneys have practiced in Jackson, Clay, Cass, Lafayette, and Platte County, Missouri as well as Johnson County, Kansas. Contact our family law firm today to schedule a consultation – we’re able to meet in person or face-to-face via Zoom.