Looks like your conversation's health status is on shaky ground.
You may have some great conversation skills, however, either one or both of you may be in danger of falling into bad communication habits that, over time, could develop resentment, hurt and, ultimately, cause distance and destruction to your relationship.
You are in luck though! You took the quiz and are catching these potential dangers early. Early detection may give you enough time to turn your destructive conversation patterns around.
It is important to be aware of the state of your conversations throughout your entire relationship and have regular conversation health checkups.
Help is on the Way!
First, check the following symptoms:
Are you or your partner:
Starting conversations in a harsh manner?
Losing your emotional control throughout the conversation – either by feeling hurt and shutting down or by becoming loud or getting angry?
Not feeling heard or acknowledged?
Not validating problems and feelings that are brought up?
Unable to see the other person's point of view and understand where they are coming from?
Assuming the worst of the other / Not giving the BOD (Benefit of the Doubt)?
If one of your symptoms, is Assuming the worst of the other / Not giving the BOD, here is some helpful advice:
Benefit of the Doubt
One of THE most important practices in a relationship that should be used often and continuously is giving our partner the benefit of the doubt. In other words, not assuming the worst - and not taking things personally.
HOW DO WE DO THIS?
1. Self Awareness! Be aware of your emotions. If you are feeling offended or wanting to defend yourself this is a good sign that it is time to step back and engage your BOD mindset.
2. Ask yourself - "Is my partner trying to purposely hurt me right now?"
or - replace "trying to purposely hurt me" - with "disappointed in me", "angry with me", trying to control me" or any other "negative" thought statement.
3. If your answer is Yes to the question(s) above - Take a deep breath. Tell yourself that your partner MAY NOT be doing this to purposely frustrate, hurt or control you.
(Feel free to write - or make a mental note - of this assumption and set aside to address when you are in a non-defensive/offended state of mind - and with a Soft Startup).
4. If you realize your partner has no ill intentions then ask yourself "What would be a good reason they could have for what they said or for this situation occurring?"
5. Remind yourself of how much you love your partner and how much they love you.
Sometimes these 5 steps are enough. If you feel you need a bit more help to move you to compassion please try the next few steps.
6. Be Curious – Ask a clarifying question (non-accusatory or leading) to help understand what your partner truly meant. Give them a chance to explain themselves and their needs a little more.
7. Believe them and Thank them for the clarification and their honesty.
NOTE: If they state an answer but you are not sure they are telling the truth (either to you or themselves) - write it down or make a mental note to come back to later to use the Effective Conversation method with them.
Believe it or not - sometimes a BOD can be disguised as an easy justification and a way to avoid conflict - but it may still have quite a bit of underlying / subconscious negative emotions attached to it.
If you find yourself giving the BOD quite a bit but still feel a tinge of resentment, hurt or frustration - you may be suppressing what you need and pretending you are fine. On the surface this can seem like you are keeping the peace and being easy going - but underneath there may be trouble brewing which can ultimately lead to distance and even seemingly unjustifiable blow-ups.
Check out below for more options for help in other symptoms.
Before we go any further, let me introduce myself…
My true passion in life is studying human behavior and communication, especially as it relates to romantic relationships. I love helping couples become more consciously aware of what is working for them and what is not.
I teach Effective Conversations - a 10 Step Method - to help couples learn to finally truly hear each other and manage their emotions during conversations so they can feel closer and once again enjoy all of their moments together.
Hundreds of couples, just like you, have learned to finally communicate effectively with each other, rebuild trust, intimacy and renew their love in relationship.
I'm Sheri Maass, your LOVE Coach
You’re NOT Alone !
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In the Madison, WI area and
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