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Communication and Relationships by YakekponoAbasi Adams

Building healthy communication patterns early in your relationship can establish a solid foundation for the long run.
Heathy communication is crucial to conflict resolution. Some people see conflict as a threat to their relationships. They work to avoid it at all cost. However, accumulated and unaddressed conflict is the real threat. Conflict is inevitable. It all depends on how you handle it.
‘Edit’ yourself. Don’t say all the angry things you’re thinking. Take some time to cool off before you address an issue. Know the right time to address an issue. Don’t be a time bomb waiting to explode. Contrary to previous notions, the best time to resolve a conflict may not be always be immediately. Don’t interrupt your partner when he’s watching a sports game, when she’s watching a TV show, or about to go to sleep. Tell your partner you would like to talk later and find a time when you’re both not doing anything important. Don’t start serious conversations in public places.
Be a good listener. Don’t interrupt.Take turns to speak. Rather than being busy formulating what your response will be in your head, focus on what your partner is saying. Fingers shaking? Many of us are guilty as charged. When your partner is talking, you just can’t wait for him/her to conclude, so that you also say your mind. Check out what you heard your partner say. Don’t assume. If you don’t understand what he/she said, ask questions. Make eye contact when speaking. Sit up and
face your partner. Let your partner know you’re listening.
When we communicate, we can say a lot without speaking. Our body posture, tone of voice and the expressions on our face all convey a message. Often, the non -verbal communication gets ‘heard’ and believed, more than what we are saying. Notice whether your body language reflects what you are saying.
Most couples will encounter some issues upon which they won’t completely agree with each other. Rather than continuing a cycle of repeated fights, agree to disagree and move on. Negotiate a compromise or find a way to work around the issue.
A clear message involves a respectful but direct expression of your wants and needs. Take some time to identify what you really want before talking to your partner. Describe your request in clear, observable terms. For example, you might say, “I would like you to hold my hand more often” rather than the vague, “I wish you were more affectionate.”
Speak up when you’re upset. Don’t bottle it in and then one day when you can’t anymore, you rain fire and brimstone on your partner.  Once you do mention your hurt feelings and your partner sincerely apologizes, let it go. Don’t bring up past issues if they’re irrelevant.
Building a good relationship is not one-sided. Both you and your partner have to put in efforts for it to work. Don’t forget that healthy communication is the key.
It’s vital to also maintain rapport with other people in your life, besides your lover. Could be your employer/employee, colleagues, church members, family members and friends.
Good relationships help connect you. It might help you get a new job, gain admission or solve any kind of problem you have.


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