How to Communicate Well with Your Partner

How to Communicate Well with Your Partner
How to Communicate Well with Your Partner

How to Communicate Well with Your Partner - Establishing romantic relationships and having a partner is a normal phenomenon that occurs in individual development from adolescence to adulthood (Shulman et al., 2011). Romantic relationships themselves can be in the form of relationships that are bound by long-term commitments such as marriage or short-term such as courtship. Although this relationship is fairly deep, it does not rule out the possibility of experiencing harmony disorders until it ends in separation.

Of the many causes of separation that have recently occurred, one of the causes is the couple's poor communication (Crowley, 2021). Effective communication is fundamental that every individual needs for a variety of purposes, almost all the time, with various parties and with different intentions.

In romantic relationships, especially with the couple, a good way of communicating with the couple has a vital role because it can influence the possibility of the appearance of misunderstandings that result in disharmony until separation. Effective communication can minimize the occurrence of cheating and ghosting.

In order not to experience these things, it is good if the individual applies healthy communication with the hope that good communication can bring warmer relationships and mutual understanding with each other.

What is Communication?

Before entering the discussion about good and healthy communication with our partner, we first need to understand the concept of communication in general so that we can more easily understand the next explanation.

Communication is generally defined as the process of providing, receiving and exchanging information and messages that are carried out verbally or non-verbally through the right media (Definitions of Communication, 2010). In practice, communication has an important role and influence on the growth and development of individuals from childhood to adulthood, just like relationships between individuals.

With communication, individuals have the opportunity to learn, interact, and establish relationships or relationships with other individuals or larger groups.

Communication Type

In general, communication can be grouped into 3 categories, namely verbal communication, non-verbal communication and written communication (Publisher, 2015).

1. Verbal communication

The verbal type of communication is one of the most frequently used forms of communication in everyday life. As the name suggests, verbal communication is communication that is carried out by exchanging words orally orally.

In everyday life, examples of verbal communication are in the form of conversations and individual conversations with other people, such as friends, family and couples.

2. Non-verbal communication

This type of communication is very different from verbal communication. In non-verbal communication, messages are conveyed through body language, eye contact, facial expressions to touch. This type of communication can play a more significant role and is more widely used in everyday life than verbal communication.

This was shown in a study that showed that verbal communication was only carried out by 7% and the rest of the information was conveyed non-verbally, both through body movements, how to dress to the facial expressions of the informer (Bambaeeroo & Shokrpour, 2017).

3. Written communication

The last type of communication is written or printed communication. In this type of communication, messages or information are given through writing through handwritten media, typed, or written on the screen.

Communication style

In addition to having three types, in everyday life we also often encounter four basic styles or styles in communicating (The Four Basic Styles of Communication, t.t.). Here are the four styles in communication.

1. Passive communication

In individuals who have a passive style of communication, they have a tendency to shy away from expressing messages, information, or opinions with the aim of not wanting to interfere with the rights of the interlocutor. It also aims to protect themselves from unpleasant situations.

However, individuals with passive communication can also experience emotional outbursts when the existing situation is intolerable. After that, they tend to feel guilty, embarrassed and confused about what they have done.

2. Aggressive communication

This aggressive style of communication is shown by individuals who express opinions and what is needed in a way that annoys others, and tends to use violence verbally as well as physically.

Usually people who communicate aggressively have characteristics such as using the statement "you", dominating, humiliating others, not listening well to others to having intimidating body language.

3. Passive-aggressive communication

Different from the previous two styles of communication, this style of communication has some characteristics similar to aggressive and passive communication. Individuals with a passive-aggressive style of communication at first glance from the outside look like passive, but inside themselves there is an anger that cannot be shown as vividly as aggressive communication.

This is because people who communicate with a passive-aggressive style feel stuck and unable to show what they really feel. Of course in the psychology of love of men and women this type of communication is not advised.

Those who communicate passively-aggressively usually display their feelings more through facial expressions such as smiling when angry or sad, using sarcasm statements, grumbling to themselves and so on.

4. Assertive communication

The last style of communication is assertive communication in which individuals with this style of communication are able to convey their opinions, rights and needs appropriately, respect and not offend the rights of others. Of course, this breed is recommended according to the psychology of communication.

Some characteristics of assertive communication such as using the statement "I", having calm body language, having good eye contact, being able to control themselves, defending their rights and not allowing others to control themselves. The application of assertive communication provides an important role in maintaining relationships with others as well as improving our mental health.

How to Communicate Healthily with Your Partner

After knowing the basics about communication, now is the time for us to enter a discussion about what kind of communication is suitable to be applied in a romantic relationship with a partner. What way of communicating is actually appropriate to maintain a harmonious relationship? Here are five tips on how to communicate well with your partner:

1. Empathize with your partner

First of all before applying tips and tricks too far in communication, it is important that we understand and empathize with our partner. One way to empathize is to try to position ourselves in the situation that the couple is facing (Natalie, 2020). A study shows that the empathy that individuals have towards their partners can increase the satisfaction of existing relationships (Long et al., 1999).

2. Increase Self-awareness

Wignal (2019) explained that self-awareness is very necessary for self-provision and facing a partner who has an aggressive communication style. This style of communication is not entirely due to hatred, but is also triggered by fear and helplessness.

Increasing self-awareness in individuals is expected to be able to feel when fear and a sense of helplessness arise, so that they can seek help or communicate their condition to their partner more quickly and precisely. Thus, aggressive commutations that usually appear as well as can be bad can be reduced.

3. Reduce the use of sarcasm

Individuals who communicate with a passive-aggressive style tend to use sarcasm in communicating with others. The use of sarcasm limits individuals in expressing their emotions, opinions, and feelings directly, but can still direct others to do what the individual wants (Wignal, 2019).

By reducing or stopping the use of sarcasm, the quality of communication and relationships with the couple will improve or improve.

4. Be honest with yourself and your partner

In some conditions applying the language "silence is gold" is appropriate, but this cannot be applied for a long time. As individuals, especially having romantic relationships with their partners, communication with a passive style that lasts for a long time can be bad for the relationship that is fostered.

To overcome this, it is better for individuals to learn to be more honest in expressing opinions, emotions and desires in the right way (Wignal, 2019). The individual must also convince himself that expressing what he is does not mean creating conflicts nor disrespecting with the partner.

5. Cultivate trust and a sense of appreciation

Increasing trust and respect for your partner is one of the main keys to maintaining relationship harmony. One of the things that can be done is to strive for assertive communication, where the couple expresses feelings and needs directly and still values their partner (Wignal, 2019).

Maintaining harmony in a relationship is not only the task of one of the parties, but a form of cooperation between two individuals. Practicing how to communicate both verbally, non-verbally and in writing to yourself and your partner can have its own impact on the relationship. Not only that, paying attention to small things such as empathy and respect for a partner also needs to be considered in maintaining the existing love.

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