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Clear Communication
cws_Clear Communication

Avoiding Communication Breakdown

Clear communication is key to healthy relationships, but it's not always easy. Some of the common problems include:

  • Defensiveness: Becoming defensive instead of listening to your partner’s point of view can make arguments worse and prevent problems from getting solved.
  • Shutting down emotionally: Withdrawing from conversations can make your partner feel ignored and rejected, which makes communication breakdowns even worse.
  • Assuming your partner can mind read: Believing your partner knows what you’re thinking or feeling without expressing it clearly can lead to misunderstandings and frustration.
  • Criticising instead of giving constructive feedback: Criticising your partner’s character instead of addressing specific behaviours can be hurtful and damaging to the relationship.
  • Ignoring difficult topics: Sweeping issues under the carpet can create resentment and distance in your relationship.

Techniques for clear, compassionate, and effective communication include:

  • Showing empathy: Try to show that you understand your partner’s feelings and point of view, even if you don’t agree with them.
  • Active listening: Practice this by giving your partner your full attention, summarising what they say, and validating their emotions.
  • Taking a break when necessary: If things get too heated, agree to cool off and talk later when both of you are calmer.
  • Use “I” statements: Express your thoughts and feelings using “I” rather than “you” to avoid blaming your partner.
  • Focusing on understanding: Instead of trying to win arguments try to understand your partner’s point of view.