Linnea Logas, MA, LAMFT, Couples Connection Coach
Creating a healthy and thriving relationship requires conscious effort and awareness of our actions and words. While it's essential to focus on positive behaviors, it's equally important to avoid harmful ones that can undermine the foundation of your relationship. In this article, we will discuss five behaviors to steer clear of in order to foster a healthy and harmonious connection with your partner.
Tip #1 - Avoid Expressing Judgement and Critique During Fights:
During disagreements or conflicts, it's tempting to point out what we perceive as our partner's faults or mistakes. However, expressing judgement and critique can escalate tensions and erode trust. Instead, focus on understanding each other's perspectives and finding constructive solutions. Remember, it's not about assigning blame, but rather working together as a team.
Tip #2 -Refrain from Using "You" Statements to Make a Point:
Using "You" statements in a confrontational manner can put your partner on the defensive and hinder effective communication. Phrases like "You always" or "You never" tend to generalize and can come across as accusatory. Instead, opt for "I" statements to express your feelings and experiences, fostering a more open and non-confrontational dialogue.
"What can make a marriage work is surprisingly simple.
Happily married couple aren't smarter, richer or more psychologically astute than others. But in their day-to-day lives, they have hit upon a dynamic that keeps their negative thoughts and feelings about each other (which all couple have) from overwhelming their positive ones. They have what i call an emotionally intelligent marriage." – John Gottman, Relationship Researcher & Expert
Tip #3 - Prioritize Listening to Understand Your Partner's Needs:
A healthy relationship thrives on mutual understanding and support. Avoid solely focusing on getting your partner to meet your needs without considering theirs. Take the time to actively listen and empathize with their perspective. By understanding their needs, you can foster a more balanced and fulfilling partnership.
Tip #4 - Consider Timing and Seek Consent for Conversations:
Effective communication relies on appropriate timing and consent. Starting conversations without considering the timing can catch your partner off guard and lead to unnecessary conflict. Instead, approach your partner respectfully, and ask if it's a good time to discuss a particular matter. This demonstrates consideration for their emotions and allows for a more productive conversation.
Tip #5 - Steer Clear of Using the Silent Treatment:
The silent treatment may seem like a temporary escape from a difficult situation, but it can have severe consequences on your relationship. It creates emotional distance and can breed resentment and further misunderstandings. Instead of resorting to silence, express your feelings and concerns openly and constructively. Work together to find resolutions and maintain healthy communication.
Building a Healthy Relationship
involves not only cultivating positive habits but also avoiding harmful behaviors. By refraining from expressing judgment and critique, using confrontational language, neglecting your partner's needs, disregarding timing, and resorting to the silent treatment, you can foster a strong and respectful connection. Remember, healthy communication, understanding, and mutual support are the pillars that will help your relationship thrive and grow.
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