A lack of communication in relationships might start as a small issue at first. However, if you let it fester and remain unresolved, it may grow into something much bigger that could drive a wedge in your relationship. Communication problems are just one of several issues that you might encounter when navigating romantic relationships. It’s important to know how to communicate in a relationship before you fall into a dynamic that does not allow for development as a couple.
Importance of Communication In Relationships
There’s a reason why many couples claim that communication is key in their relationship. Being able to communicate with your partner helps establish a healthy avenue for resolving issues or quarrels. More than that, communication is important in any relationship because it helps you understand your significant other on a more substantial and emotional level. This can eventually bring you closer together and help strengthen your connection to one another.
There is so much of yourself that you can share with your partner by simply communicating with them. Sharing a part of yourself, especially more personal aspects of your life, can be easier said than done, though. Nevertheless, establishing a good habit of communicating is a step in the right direction towards developing a healthy relationship.
What Happens When Your Relationship Suffers From A Lack Of Communication?
Poor communication in a relationship can drive you and your significant other apart. Though it sounds extreme, lack of communication can bring forth conflict that may cause irreparable damage to your relationship.
When there is a lack of communication, you put your relationship at risk of breeding doubt and insecurity. What good is a relationship where you can’t talk to your partner freely and comfortably? You’ll only set yourself up for failure when communication problems overshadow the good parts of your relationship.
How To Fix Communication In A Relationship
There can be different ways of dealing with the lack of communication in relationships. Some of these methods are more straightforward than others. Whether you’re looking to remedy a lack of communication or simply want to talk to your partner more, here are some tips on how to build healthy communication routines in your relationship.
1. Make A Habit Out Of Actively Communicating With Your Partner
Maintaining a habit of communication need not be a big, grand gesture or a major sit-down every week. You can take baby steps when remedying a lack of communication in your relationship. Small talk is better than no communication at all, so start with the little things. Ask your partner how their day went or just check in on them from time to time.
Some couples might blame technology for causing a rift in relationships, but in this case, technology will be an advantage. Use your phone or social media to maintain consistency in reaching out to your partner, even when they are physically not with you. Leave them nice messages throughout the day, whether it be through texts or comments on their Instagram stories.
This small but significant piece of effort will show just how much you’ve invested in the other person. Furthermore, it can help either of you become more used to the idea of opening up and letting each other in, no matter how minuscule the communication attempt might be. This can eventually lead to both of you becoming more comfortable with talking to each other, whether it be about lighthearted subjects or more serious aspects of your relationship.
2. Be Open And Transparent With Your Partner
Some people might struggle with showing vulnerability in their relationships. The fact of the matter is, being in a relationship calls for sharing parts of yourself with your partner — both the good and the bad. It’s okay to be vulnerable. Let your guard down with your significant other; hiding your emotions can only lead to misunderstandings and more communication problems.
It can be scary breaching heavy or sensitive topics but if you continue to sweep the problem under the rug, things will never get resolved and misunderstandings will continue to develop. You can’t expect to communicate effectively with one another when one or both of you are unwilling to open up.
When something needs to be said, don’t be afraid to hold back. Your partner deserves to know when something is bothering you or if there’s something about your relationship that isn’t working out. How else will you be able to alleviate a lack of communication when neither of you is capable of expressing yourselves to one another in the first place?
3. Find The Right Time To Talk
There’s a time and place for everything. When deciding the right time to talk things out with your significant other, think beyond just a convenience of schedules. Sure, making time to fix a lack of communication in a relationship can be an effort in itself. However, it can be just as important to make sure both of you are actually in the right mindset to talk.
Make sure that neither of you is angry or upset when you ask to talk. Though we recommend being open and transparent with your partner, talking things out when one party is overly emotional can lead to poor communication. You are more likely to say things you don’t mean in heated moments, so be careful when your emotions are still on the rise as they might cloud your judgment and reactions.
4. Ask Questions
Unless you or your partner is a mind-reader, neither of you can’t expect to know what the other is thinking at any point in time. The last thing you want to do is assume what your partner wants because your guess won’t always be right. It’s okay to ask questions, so be comfortable about doing so.
Making inquiries can help you learn more about your partner’s preferences and vice versa. Additionally, it helps pave the way towards establishing good communication in your relationship, as you’ll be able to understand each other much better just by simply asking a question or two. This allows the two of you to actively engage each other and get to hear the other person’s point of view too.
5. Be An Active Listener
Communication in a relationship is more than just an exchange of words. Being an active listener means being able to pay attention to the littlest of details about how your partner communicates. Focus on what they’re saying and trying to get across as opposed to merely hearing the words that come out of their mouth.
It can be hard to put aside your pride but stubbornly pushing your statement and refusing to hear the other person out will just worsen the situation. More often than not, competing with wanting to be heard can only lead to either party being silenced further. You won’t get anywhere with fixing a lack of communication in your relationship if you can’t even pay attention to what your partner is saying.
6. Pay Attention To Non-Verbal Signs
Part of being an active listener means being able to pick up on your partner’s non-verbal behaviors and signals. This can include facial expressions, tone of voice, and eye contact. Take note of their body language both in and out of arguments or discussions. Though they might not express it in words, their non-verbal habits can be telling enough of how they’re feeling.
On the other side of the spectrum, your body language can play a crucial role in how your partner perceives you. Keep yourself in check, as you might come off as aggressive or uninterested without even knowing it. This can lead to a lot of misunderstandings in the relationship when the other party misinterprets your reaction to the matter.
Being more attentive to these details can bridge that lack of communication as you start to be more perceptive of your partner’s non-verbal cues. This way, you can prevent the argument from escalating even further and try to resolve things early.
7. Find A Balance Between Listening And Being Heard
Healthy relationships take two to tango just as positive communication is a two-way street. You need to be able to find a balance between listening to your partner and getting your point across. As important as it is to be an active listener, it can be just as vital to ensure that you’re being heard.
Don’t neglect your own needs in your relationship but remember to consider your partner’s feelings and needs as well. Remember: relationships are about give and take. An inability to balance both listening and talking might just aggravate the lack of communication between you and your partner.
8. Be Generous With Your Affection
Showing more affection towards your partner is a great way of expressing your feelings and make your partner feel more loved and appreciated. In doing so, they will grow to become more at ease with you, which can help them open up to you on a much deeper and sentimental level. This can lead to more opportunities for open communication between the two of you.
Even when a lack of communication is not an issue for you, showing affection through words or actions is a healthy practice worth maintaining in any relationship. Even showing affection through a simple gesture can make a big difference. Just be sure that when you express your affection, it’s independent of the circumstance or the atmosphere you’re in.
Being affectionate goes beyond just trying to patch things up in the aftermath of an argument. It’s more than something you show in just romantic settings as well. Affection is something you should offer regardless of the occasion, so make a habit out of showing your partner how much you love them. This can strengthen not just communication, but your relationship as a couple in general as well.
9. Establish Your Boundaries
Setting boundaries is crucial in any healthy relationship. When you set boundaries, you’re able to learn how to respect the differences between you and your partner. They can also help you understand different perspectives better, which can be beneficial during arguments or misunderstandings. Healthy boundaries can help both of you be more comfortable about talking with one another, as you’ll be aware of what sort of subjects can be broached and what can’t be. This, ultimately, can help you avoid miscommunications.
Make sure, however, that the boundaries you set won’t alienate your partner. Though they’re one half of what makes your relationship, they are still their person. Thus, avoid going the extremes when you’re setting up boundaries in your relationship. Not only does this take away their agency, but it also sets up the workings of a controlling and toxic relationship.
Think of boundaries as a guide to help you maneuver communication in a relationship. They’re not meant to limit you and your partner. Instead, they’re there to help hone good communication skills and establish a deeper sense of respect and love between you and your significant other.
10. Make Time For Each Other
Communication will come easier when you feel connected and at ease with your partner. Make time to work on your actual relationship, whether it be sifting through small problems or just spending some quality time together. Talking can help you progress your relationship by leaps and bounds, so why not supplement all that hard work with something that can further fortify your bond together?
Spending time with your significant other will help you feel closer to them. This, in turn, can make you feel more comfortable in their company. In effect, you can become more willing to open up and share more personal thoughts and feelings with your partner.
Lack of communication in relationships can sometimes stem from feeling uncomfortable about letting your walls down. Help your partner (and yourself) loosen up by spending time together and creating a space that is safe and welcoming for communication and mutual growth.
Resolving communication issues in relationships takes more than just actually talking. Relationships can be complex, so fixing a lack of communication will require a lot of hard work and dedication from both parties. It’s okay if you don’t know how to communicate effectively right off the bat. As long as you put in the effort towards improving communication skills and working on your relationship, you’re already showing your partner that you’re in this together for the long haul.
However, if you have exhausted all your efforts and things are still not working out, it might be a sign that you two are not compatible. When you have reached that stage where you have to end things between you two, try to end things on good terms so there are no hard feelings.