No two people communicate exactly the same and it’s not uncommon for couples to run into communication roadblocks. Whether intentional or not, communication mistakes can cause heated arguments and irrevocable damage to the relationship. In order to maintain healthy communication, these mistakes need to be avoided.
One common communication mistake is allowing criticism to become too frequent and harsh. While constructive criticism is necessary to bring up issues, it should be done tactfully and with kindness. Name-calling and constant negative language will erode trust and respect in the relationship. A couples should practice expressing critiques in a respectful way, using "I statements" such as “I feel frustrated when…” instead of passive aggressive comments.
Another blunder many couples fall into is getting stuck in repetitive conversations. Frequently going round and round the same topics without progressing the conversation will start to feel like a dead end for both parties involved. Recognize when this happens and try to step back for a few moments, take deep breaths and try to come up with a compromise instead of arguing without end. communication shouldn’t just be about problem-solving. Mix it up and make time for conversation about less serious matters and simply talking about each other's day.
In addition, there tends to be a lot of passive aggressive communication in relationships. One partner may neglect to mention that they’d like something instead of directly asking for it. Passive aggressive behavior is often a result of one partner feeling like they don’t have the power to express their feelings and wants openly. Both partners should talk about how they want and expect to be treated so that everyone's feelings and needs are addressed.
One of the most damaging communication mistakes can be stonewalling. This occurs when a partner ignores, avoids, or shuts down when facing conflict. It usually comes from a place of self-protection but can have long-term effects on the relationship if it becomes the go-to move when controversy arises. Before shutting down, partners should try to discuss the issue in order to find an amicable solution.
No matter what issues arise, couples can avoid common communication mistakes by expressing themselves openly and honestly. it’s important to stay mindful of potential words and behaviors that can be harmful to the relationship and strive to keep things mature and respectful. With honest communication, respect, and steadfast love, couples can build the healthiest of relationships.