Greetings from the Land of Enchantment: Fair Fight II: Three Keys to Communication

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Fair Fight II: Three Keys to Communication

Learning to communicate in a marriage is like learning a new language. At first you listen too hard and are exhausted all the time. Then you overcompensate and don't listen closely enough and become careless, or even give up. But you're in a marriage, so you can't give up for too long, or it's no longer a marriage. It's just roommates--or worse.

The first key is to remember--and trust--that the other person always wants what's best for you. Every fiber of my being rebels against this notion, but nevertheless, despite all my subconscious resistance, it is true. So when I communicate my boundaries I always frame them in a way that let's my husband know that I know he's trying to uplift me--it's just not working. Smile. But in acknowledging that I know his intentions are good, he can hear me. Otherwise, we just go 'round and 'round defending ourselves against each other--and that's not communication.

The second key is to always remember, "the other person is you." Everything that bugs you about what their doing, you have already done--a 100 times or more! And if you take the time to look for it in yourself, you'll find it; and you'll be able to relax. Why? Because we rationalize our behavior to make what we do and why we do it okay. Once you recognize you've done it, too, then it becomes "right", right? So when your partner does it, you can't get so bent out of shape.  It's the nature of the mind; so use it to your benefit.

The third key is to know that it's not always about you. When my husband is quiet, I assume I've done something to irritate him. But for the past few days I've been dealing with some internal conflict that has very little, if anything, to do with him and everything to do with my own compulsive behaviors and my shame around that. I've been moody, shut-down, agitated and inexplicably sad--and there's nothing he can do. So the next time he's quiet, I'm going to try to remember that it may not be about me at all and just let him have his space.

Anytime two people are living under the same roof, there is going to be conflict. Sometimes they will be big and sometimes they will be trivial. It's not the end of the world. You will smile again, eventually. And you may even learn that you can live with things that were once intolerable, or not. Every person's lessons are unique. But until then, don't say or do anything you can't take back; put the shovel down and just wait. Learning a new language takes time and patience; and there's all the time in the world.

2 Comments:

At 6:16 PM, Blogger Heliotrope Tree House said...

I am learning so much from reading your blog posts.Thank you.
Love to you,
Cynthia

 
At 9:53 AM, Blogger Sat Purkh Kaur Khalsa said...

Thanks for reading! Glad you've found it helpful. . .

 

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