Eventually, in virtually every relationship the moment comes when the two sides stop paying attention to their choice of words and begin to push each other away using poorly thought-out phrases.
We at Bright Side decided it was time to work out how to preserve the warmth in a relationship and avoid ever letting things reach breaking point. It turns out that all you need to do is apply three simple rules of communication.
When speaking about your wishes, cut out “don’t“ and ”won’t.”
Elements of speech such as “don’t“ and ”won’t“ have the ability to give certain assertions a negative quality. Therefore, they’re not worth using when you talk about your wishes. Moreover, it’s often harder for your partner to understand how to act when they hear phrases like this, as their ambiguity leaves them with many different options.
- Bad: “I don’t want you to control me.”
- Good: ”I want you to trust me.”
Try to use “and“ instead of ”but.”
This rule seems simple, but you’ll actually have to spend a long time incorporating this change into your life. But it’s definitely worth it, for this one rule can reset your communication with your partner from being a duel of words to a forum for cooperation. You can see the difference for yourself:
- Bad: “I understand you, but I also want you to understand me.“
- Good: ”I understand you, and I also want you to understand me.”
Don’t spoil a compliment with negativity.
Have you noticed how some people think it wise to express their dissatisfaction even while they’re offering praise? The problem is that such individuals’ brains are wired to react withgreater energy to bad things. If you want to praise someone, take extra care not to mix compliments and criticism together.
- Bad: “Supper was delicious, unlike yesterday.“
- Good: ”Supper was delicious, thank you!”
From time to time, we underestimate the strength of our words, and at the same time we’re too lazy to work on our speech habits. But it’s ultimately better to learn to talk in such a way that allows others to understand us than it is to deal with problems caused by misunderstanding. Wouldn’t you agree?
Illustrator: Natalia Kulakova for BrightSide