Avoid This Communication Mistake!
There are so many ways in which we as humans communicate our feelings, needs, desires, and interests to one another.
Through eye contact, body language, touch, inflection, and tone of voice, one can convey a wide variety of things, and just by slightly altering one of those aspects, you could end up communicating something you did not intent on doing, hence where miscommunication comes into play.
Due to our past experiences, how we were raised, what we observed, and what we prefer, each person has their own communication style.
We are not born with this style, therefore it can be changed to fit each situation we are involved in.
Often, couples have two completely different styles of communication; this is usually where issues arise, when one partner does not completely understand the other or misreads something within an important conversation, leaving even more issues in the wake of the conversation.
Most people have a goal during a conversation and that is to be physically heard and fully understood.
There are some simple dos and don’ts to abide by when engaging in an important conversation with your partner to help you avoid making commutation mistakes.
First, if you are having an argument, need to get something off your chest, or want to have a serious, uninterrupted conversation with your spouse, do not conduct it via text, email, or handwritten letter.
These methods of communication are great if you are a busy person and simply need to ask your spouse to pick up a bottle of wine before the dinner party you were invited to.
Otherwise, these should be avoided. Here are some reasons why:
When communicating via text, email, or handwritten letter, it is difficult to ascertain the other party’s intention, tone of voice, or attitude behind the text and often assumptions are made, which can cause problems in the end.
Your bad day may come through during the conversation.
You wake up late accidentally and are in a rush to get out the door; you don’t have time for your morning coffee and also get stuck in rush hour traffic.
Nothing at work goes your way and your boss comes down on you for no apparent reason.
After getting back in your car for the trek home, you receive a text from your spouse wanting to talk about something serious—instead of waiting for you to get home and unwind, they send you a four-page text full of emotion and it seems like they are angry with you.
Would you feel like responding in this moment?
Even if you do, you shouldn’t.
Messages through writing can be subjective.
If five different people received the same message, there could end up being five different perceptions and translations of that message.
One cannot assume to know the full meaning behind a written message without speaking with the author.
Now you may be wondering what you should be doing.
Here are three keys to good communication and better understanding—this will turn frustrating conversations into unique interactions and is called the Triple-A Engine of communication:
Attune: The purpose of attune is to bring harmony into the conversation and for the couple to harmonize with each other.
Turn off and tune out everything else in your life and your area so that it is just you and the other person without distractions.
Put cell phones and other electronics away, find a quiet place to talk, and make sure you are making eye contact and fully being with the other person.
Ask: You may assume that you know the other person’s thoughts and what is really being communicated, therefore you may make incorrect judgments.
Just simply ask the other person—-ask what they are thinking, how they are feeling, etc.
If you need to understand the other’s motivation, then ask.
And when you do ask, make sure to ask sincere and honest questions, which will get you further in the conversation.
Acknowledgment: This is willingness to understand the other side of things and acknowledge that everyone has their own opinion and view of what is going on.
Even if you do not fully agree with what they are saying, validate their feelings and acknowledge what they have said.
These steps are fluid and you can go back and forth between the three.
For example, if you acknowledge your partner but communication isn’t fully happening, you may go back to asking questions; if they refuse to answer your questions or are getting annoyed with the questioning, then go back one more step and atune again.
The main message here is to not ASSUME——just TALK.
This same “Triple A Engine” can work with your friends, children, parents, or anyone else with whom you need to communicate with more than on a casual level.
It is an especially important communication system for romantic love and marriage.
If you are in love, want to be in love, or trying to rescue lost love, this system can lead you to levels of understanding, closeness, and intimacy that few people ever reach.
I truly wish you the best in saving your marriage.
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