Why is it so hard to communicate sometimes, especially with the ones who are closest to us?
Are there things that need to be talked about in your marriage or relationship, with your kids, or at work, but you don’t know how to address those topics without fear of causing a conflict or an argument?
You care about your spouse (partner, child, parent, co-worker) and want only the best for them. You start out a well-meaning conversation that you are certain is going to make a difference for them, and one minute into it he or she is getting frustrated with something that you said. Because you can’t figure out what that is, and you suddenly start feeling invalidated or disrespected, or entirely misunderstood, or not trusted, YOU now get frustrated as well, and another minute later one of you or both of you are either screaming and slamming doors, or you are in different corners of the house feeling unsettled, misunderstood and angry. And are thinking “what in the world just happened?”. You start wondering if you would be better off with a different partner (or different parents) who would “understand” you or just “know” you better.
Does that sound familiar to you?
One of the issues my clients ask me to help them with the most is to communicate peacefully and effectively with their partner. Relationships are such an important part of our lives and communication issues are the main reason why couples argue and sometimes, eventually, break up. Unfortunately, most of us didn’t learn how to effectively communicate from our parents, and school doesn’t teach it either. Most women don’t know how to express their needs or make requests to have their needs filled and men don’t know how to make their wives feel “heard” beyond the physical act of hearing them. However, communication is where everything happens.
To quote John Gray (“Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus”):
“When men and women are on the verge of arguing, they are generally misunderstanding each other.”
Men and women communicate differently. They are wired entirely differently – speaking from a biological and genetic standpoint – in their communications and their approach to things. And then there are also our underlying human emotions and fears (fears of rejection or “looking bad” or being unworthy of making requests) that hinder us in our communications. This happens not just with our spouse or significant other, but also with our boss, coworkers, business partners, clients, parents or children.
There is a technique I teach, called the “effective communication”. It involves 5 steps to communicating powerfully and effectively, bringing your point across, being heard, and creating an outcome from the conversation that leaves everyone involved feeling empowered, respected and understood. Usually the result is a stronger partnership (business or private), a more peaceful, loving relationship, and more appreciation and support. The technique will help you resolve any conflict (current or past) and increases the understanding and trust between partners, which in the process leads to a more connected and intimate relationship.
The process is hands-on, fun and practical. Once practiced, you will be able to use this technique for the rest of your life!