Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Four Advanced Skills for Relationship Communication

In Dr. John Gottman's research, he found that happy, stable couples do the following 4 things in order to keep conflicts from escalating and to have clear communication.

1. They used a "softened start up." The first 3 minutes of a conflict will determine how well the discussion will proceed. If problems are raised with criticism, the discussion tends to every quickly go downhill and relationship satisfaction decreases.

2. Accept influence: understand your partner's way of thinking. In every conflict there are two points of view and two realities. Both realities are right. Hold your views while hearing, accepting and acknowledging your partner's view. Get out of the mindset of who's right and who's wrong.

3. Repair blunders. In the heat of a conflict emotions can escalate. Work toward being respectful of your partner and his/her views, but if you make a blunder, clean up your mess.

4. Compromise. Work just as hard at helping your partner get their needs met in a conflict as you do at getting your needs met.

If you believe you and your partner could use some work in the area of conflict management, you can reach me at 512-795-0402 or go to my website www.mariposapsychtherapy.com

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