Does your communication style need help?
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|Sun, 09-02-2007 - 1:08pm|
FIVE SIGNS YOUR COMMUNICATION STYLE NEEDS A TUNE-UP
1. The same issues keep popping up because they haven't been resolved.
2. One or both partners feel hurt, angry or misunderstood and don't discuss these feelings.
3. Someone has to win; every discussion seems like a competition.
4. One or both partners withdraw to avoid discussions that have become frustrating, uncomfortable or threatening.
5. Partners overreact. Little things become big things, and perspective is lost.
FIVE WAYS TO IMPROVE COMMUNICATION
1. Use "I" statements to avoid defensiveness from your partner, but avoid placing blame. Statements such as "I think you are wrong" devalue the other person. Instead, try saying, "When you do X, I feel Y", and then explain why.
2. Seek to understand before being understood, which involves listening closely. If you're worried you'll forget your response by waiting until your partner is finished speaking, take notes.
3. Stay in the present. Old arguments bring up old hurts and muddy the water.
4. Avoid criticism, judgment and blame.
5. Establish a desired outcome. Ask yourself, "What do I really want to have happen here?"