One of our favorite couple of vloggers are real-life partners Lisa and Lauren of This Colorful World.
Their latest video is part of their ongoing relationship series. It looks at simple ways that you can improve communication in your relationship – whether that be with a partner or other person in your life.
The advice is practical, constructive and truly simple – and yet covers things that many of us never think about.
You can watch the video here, with their four points summarized below.
Let us know below if you think you could benefit from taking it on board.
1. ‘Take away absolutes’
‘Like “never” or “always”,’ says Lisa.
‘With absolutes when you say, “You are always on your phone” or “you are never home in time for dinner,” what that does is immediately put the other person on the defensive,’ says Lauren. They will then counter that they are not ‘always’ on the phone, and the conversation will lock down on the use of the word ‘always’.
2. ‘Use “I feel” statements
Lauren explains that an ‘I feel’ statement is when, ‘You change an accusatory statement, “you are ignoring me today”, to an ‘I feel” statement. You lead with the words “I feel”.
‘What that does it take a lot of the attack out,’ and makes your partner less likely to become defensive and more open to discussing the issue without shutting down.
3. ‘Turn your feelings into a request’
‘For instance,’ says Lisa, ‘if I think Lauren is on her phone a lot, like all the time, instead of telling her that, “Oh, you’re on your phone all the time,” over dinner I will turn it into a request that sounds a lot nicer and I’ll still get the same outcome.
‘I’ll be like, “Hey babe, tonight I’m cooking a really nice dinner and I would love for us to have a phone free evening, if you’re down for that, that would mean a lot to me?”
‘You’ll still get the same result but minus the potential fight.’
4. ‘Wait a beat before responding’
Instead of responding immediately, Lisa advises, ‘take a beat, take a moment to have a quick inner dialogue with yourself … how do I actually feel about that and how am I going to express how I feel calmly but also constructively.’
‘And also to get to the root of what they said,’ adds Lauren. ‘Maybe you’re still stuck on the first six words that came out of their mouth that you miss the whole point of what they’re saying.’