In order to maintain a successful and fulfilling marriage, we all know it takes work from both partners. As you set out on your journey together, it is important to remember that understanding the aspects of interpersonal communication is essential to learning how to effectively communicate with one another. Sara, when you have something you want to discuss with Tim, you want him to really listen and consider your point view, right? Also, Tim, know you feel the same way.
I would like to offer you both some advice and give you some information that can help guide you in learning how to monomaniac with each other to the best of your abilities. To communicate effectively with one another, you must first understand some of the barriers that prevent us from doing so in our interactions. Bean & Sole (2014) state that, “the fundamental purpose of human communication is to allow people to generate and share their thoughts, feelings, experiences, beliefs, opinions, or really anything they can think to express” (Chapter 1 . 1).
However, there are many types of distractions, called noise, that prevent us from fully sharing these messages with each other. Physical noise is, obviously, external in form, such as a cell phone going off or other conversations around you. This type of distraction can interfere with our concentration on the conversation. I can say from personal experience that when I have an important issue to discuss with my husband, I want to have his full attention. Psychological noise is another distraction that can hinder us from understanding the meaning of a message. Biases, prejudices, stereotypes, and even extreme emotions such as rage are all examples of psychological noise” (Bean & Sole, 2014, chapter 1. 2). If we have a certain IEEE or feeling about a situation and are not willing to consider other perspectives, it is not likely that we will communicate effectively. You have to keep an open mind and remember that two people can perceive a situation in completely different ways. These are just two of the types of noises that prevent us from being fully involved in an interaction.
My advice to you is to make an effort in recognizing the obstacles that stand in the way of communication, whether they be tangible or intangible. If you can recognize the things that can distract you, it is easier to acknowledge and discard them, allowing for more focused interactions. It is important to be aware of your self-concept as an individual, but also as you become part of a relationship such as yours. Self-concept is developed and maintained by communication with yourself, as well as others. You construct this sense of self… By what you tell yourself and what others tell you about yourself. In other words, your self-concept is first externally imposed by others and then internally incorporated in your thoughts, feelings, actions, and communication” (Bean & Sole, 2014, chapter 2. 1 Therefore, it can affect how you perceive yourself, how you view situations, how you deal with them, ND even how you communicate. To further explain, let’s say Tim has been told that he has a temper and overreacts to situations.
If he chooses to accept this perception of himself, it is likely that this is exactly how he will respond, which goes with the concept of self-fulfilling prophecy in which “you see what you expect to see and hear what you expect to hear” (Bean & Sole, 2014). This can hinder communication on both sides of the relationship. However, remember that your self-concept can change over time and being aware of it can help you when it comes to your interactions with each other. It is also very important that you each use emotional intelligence when you communicate with one another.
This is how you understand and convey your emotions and also how you recognize and handle your partners emotions. According to Keating & Kelly (2008), “The inter- personal domain [of emotional intelligence] consists of: (a) empathy, the degree to which an individual is sensitive to the emotions of others and able to assess emotional cues accurately; and (b) handling relationships, the ability to use emotional knowledge to promote functional relationships” (pig. 107). Our emotions can cause arguments or any type of conflict to become messy.
At times we may take our anger out on loved ones, making the situation far worse than it should be. Or, we may fail to acknowledge our spouse’s emotions because our own are not handled properly. Every relationship will encounter conflict; it’s unavoidable. However, you can have control of how you handle your emotions and you have the ability to access the emotions of each other. “Given the centrality of emotion to the human experience, the skills of emotional intelligence play a crucial role in people’s relationships through the interpretation and management of emotions” (Keating & Kelly, 2008, pig. 05). Being able to pick up on each other’s emotions will help you view a situation from a different perspective, which is essential to a functioning relationship. Using emotional intelligence will also assist you in interpreting your own emotions, therefore allowing to respond appropriately during interactions. Self-disclosure in your relationship will allow you to truly connect and relate to one another. Self-disclosure is not just the basic information about yourself, but the deeper things about you.
Researcher Terrier Robust states that “you can have a two-hour conversation and not talk about anything of absence or value or quality’ (as cited in Schoenberg, 2011, Para. 2). It is sometimes hard to judge exactly how much you should disclose about yourself, but as you are going into a marriage, it is important that you really connect on deeper levels with each other. My advice for you is to spend a little time each day to have conversations that focus on your thoughts and feelings on different subjects. This will allow you to learn more about each other on an equal level.
According to Schoenberg (2011 “Quality communication is defined somewhat differently from study to study, but research consistently has hon. a link between happy marriages and “self-disclosure,” or sharing your private feelings, fears, doubts and perceptions with your partner” (Para. 8). We have conversations all the time that are simply about every day, mundane things. Having more quality communication as a couple will allow your relationship to flourish and create a connection that goes beyond superficial.
When you use strategies for managing your conflicts effectively, your relationship can grow stronger. There are going to be many things you disagree on, but if you handle them right they can be more of a learning experience than a heated argument. How you respond to situations is up to you. If something bad happens that leaves you both frustrated, you have a choice on how the situation will go. You may let your frustration cause the two of you to get into an argument, or you can work together to correct the situation.
Thinking positively will influence your relationship greatly; just as negative thinking will. Self-care is also a strategy that can help you manage your conflicts better. We all need some time to ourselves to sort through our inner thoughts and emotions. If you do this regularly, it is easier to determine hat you are feeling and decide the best way to handle it. According to Barker (201 0), “if we allow ourselves some time to think about what is going on in our lives there is the possibility for reflection on events and processing of emotions” (pig. 39).
Trying to deal with emotions during an argument with no time to really think about it can just make the situation worse. This usually ends up being when we say things we don’t really mean and hurt each other. “When things are already heated, continued discussion will often escalate the situation, whereas taking time out separately to allow ourselves to cool down means that the matter can be returned to in a less volatile state of mind” (Barker, 2010, pig. 40). Being able to recognize when the situation needs to be put on hold for a while will save you a lot Of unnecessary and sometimes harsh words.
As you can see, Sara and Tim, effective communication is so very important to your relationship. There are many distractions that can be a hindrance during your interactions, but if you are aware of them, they are easier to acknowledge and deal with. When you understand your self-concept, you can be more aware of who you are and how you deal with things. Understanding our own emotions, as well as each other’s emotions will help you in relating to and responding to one another.
Also, if you take some time to focus on quality communication with each other, your relationship can become even deeper. Maintaining strategies for overcoming your conflicts is also going to be very important in keeping your marriage going strong. Hope you use this information and my advice in your relationship and strive to communicate with each other as best you can.