The 7 Most Common Communication Problems and How to Fix Them
Have there been times when you have struggled to effectively get your point across to your partner? Does it seem like there are communication problems when you interact with each other? Every marriage can run into problems communicating. However, marriage counseling can be effective for learning new communication skills.
Communication Problems #1: Telling vs. Talking
One common communication problem occurs when one or both partner mistakes telling for talking to one another. Telling means that you are pushing your thoughts and opinions on your partner. You are right, and they are wrong. Of course, no one likes to be told what to do or think. Arguments can develop because of this.
Marriage counseling can help couples to actually talk to one another. Each person is able to have a balanced and even conversation instead of a one-sided discussion.
Communication Problems #2: Making Generalizations
Have you ever found yourself saying, “You always …” with regards to your partner’s behavior?
Using “always” generalizes and often blows behavior out of proportion. Your partner is less likely to be open to what you have to say. They probably don’t believe they always leave the toilet seat up or forget to take out of the trash. You can learn in marriage counseling how to make feedback specific and relevant to what is happening in the moment.
Communication Problems #3: The Mental Eye Roll
When you and your partner are talking to do you ever think:
- “Oh no, here we go again.”
- “Why do we keep having talk about this?”
- “This is such a waste of my time.”
- “I’d rather be doing anything else than this.”
These could be considered “mental eye rolls.” When you are discounting what your partner is saying as unimportant, you are less likely to be receptive. Marriage counseling can teach you how to value your partner’s perspective.
Communication Problems #4: Always Being in Control
Wanting to control situations or the narrative of a conversation inevitably leads to conflict. No one likes being controlled, but you may seek out control because other aspects of your life are out of control, such as:
- Your job
- Your boss
- Your kids’ behavior
- A previously unknown health issue
Marriage counseling allows you the space to let go, and to openly talk about what is going on for you in an emotionally supportive way.
Communication Problems #5: Picking the Wrong Place
When you want to talk about something important, does it seem to happen in the wrong place? Knowing where to have the discussion is just as important as what you are discussing. A confined, public space, like a restaurant, might not be a good idea. However, a quiet part of a community park, such as the many here in Rexburg, ID, could be a better option. For really sensitive subjects, a private space in your home would work best. You can consider these options in a marriage counseling session.
Communication Problems #6: Picking the Wrong Time
Just as with picking the wrong place, the wrong time is another communication issue. Talking to your partner after they have had a frazzled day at work might not be the best time for a touchy subject. Help them respond best to what you have to say. Pick an appropriate time when they are rested, alert, and calm. Again, marriage counseling can help you plan out these discussions.
Communication Problems #7: Not Listening!
Listening is such an important communication skill, yet so many people lack adequate listening skills. In marriage counseling, you can learn to not just express yourself effectively, but be an effective listener too.
Your marriage doesn’t have to have communication problems. By participating in marriage counseling, you can learn new skills, practice techniques, and develop your communication skills. Both of you can become better communicators and have a stronger marriage.