6 Steps to Great Communication
By Cynthia Hanson
6 steps to great communication. You’re bound to disagree with your significant other from time to time, whether it’s about chores, finances or just what movie to see. Fortunately, you can be angry with your honey without worrying that you’re on the road to splitsville.
The key is to communicate in a way that deepens your love and connection, says Patricia Gibberman, a licensed clinical social worker in Fairfax, Va. How you speak to your partner — especially during arguments — says a lot about the strength of your marriage. In his studies, Dr. John Gottman, a marriage expert with a doctorate in psychology, found that those who talk respectfully and with love are happier and stay wed longer than those who attack each other’s character or treat each other with contempt.
“Happily married couples behave like good friends, because they handle their conflicts in gentle and positive ways,” says Gibberman, a certified Gottman-method couples therapist, who teaches clients to communicate more effectively.
Try this six-step plan to help you tune up your couple talk — and stay closer than ever:
1. Become an active listener.