How to improve compatibility and healthy communication with your partner, according to a psychologist
Want to find ways to enhance compatibility and healthy communication with your significant other? A psychologist reveals nine ways to have a meaningful bond with your partner.
Relationships are tough, and maintaining them requires equal effort. Though they have some ups and downs, better communication and compatibility can make it easier to deal with conflicts and build a healthier romantic partnership. From active listening skills to practising small gestures to being an independent person while staying in a relationship, all these steps and more can help one have a meaningful bond with their significant other. So, to help you find out ways to enhance compatibility and healthy communication with your partner, we decided to reach out to an expert. A clinical psychologist from Delhi, Dr Samriddhi Khatri, told Hindustan Times nine things to follow to achieve the same with your partner. (Also Read: Green flags to look for in romantic relationship and find if it has long-term potential, according to psychologist)
Dr Samriddhi Khatri explained, "Good listening skills are a part of effective communication which is the first key to healthy relationships. One should listen to their partners, give them time to talk, and incorporate positive gestures like nodding. Reciprocating and showing that they understand what their significant other expressed are a few keys to a healthy relationship. Additionally, direct communication is an essential part of this step. It basically means having conversations where you are not hiding your feelings and saying something and meaning the opposite of it."
Small Surprises and Gestures
Dr Khatri said that "giving each other small surprises from time to time and practising meaningful gestures keep the spark alive in the relationship." According to her, "One can practise the same by cooking a good meal for your partner, taking them out to their favourite restaurant, going out for a movie they have been meaning to watch, and more."
Intimate And Non-Intimate Touches
"Try to incorporate intimate and non-intimate touches in the relationship. Practice physical intimacy with casual kisses and hugs, or opt for non-intimate gestures like holding hands, back rubs and foot massage. These things help increase trust and comfort in the relationship," Dr Khatri said. (Also Read: Top signs that you are sabotaging your relationship)
Dr Khatri said that maintaining independence "does not mean running away from your partner from time to time or hiding things from them." She added, "Instead, one should have a life outside of the relationship, like enjoying hobbies and relishing personal time - some people like golfing, reading books, and meeting their friends - because that time apart builds your personality. It preserves your individuality. Yes, we evolve in a relationship, but that does not necessarily mean that your world should only revolve around the relationship."
Being Mindfully Present
Dr Khatri stressed the importance of being mindfully present when spending time with your partner. She said, "We should avoid using our cell phones while eating with our partner or working while having an important discussion. These habits could be distracting and disrespectful and could deteriorate the quality of your communication. So, try to avoid multitasking when planning to spend some quality time with your significant other or taking an important decision with them."
Dr Khatri said, "Having mutual respect means respecting each other's opinions and beliefs and understanding and accepting individual differences. For instance, some people do not respect their partners because they earn less than them. In our Indian culture, sometimes women, especially homemakers, are not respected because people believe they are not doing enough for the relationship or family. All these behaviour patterns harm the relationship and should not be practised."
Having non-judgemental communication with your partner means sharing feelings and understanding theirs without inhibitions. Dr Khatri added, "Of course, sometimes this may seem impossible. But one should always try to stay calm and as open as possible while communicating with their significant others. Also, take timeouts when you get angry instead of lashing out over your partner or having outbursts." Additionally, creating a safe environment for each other is also necessary.
Avoid Manipulation And Mind Reading
Dr Khatri clarified, "This is again related to direct communication." She added, "It means communicating and listening to each other's needs directly and politely rather than passive-aggressively. One should also avoid reading their partner's behaviour because you may derive the exact opposite meaning of the situation." Also, direct communication may make some people anxious. But, with the right person, it becomes rewarding.
Taking Help From A Professional
Dr Khatri said, "If you feel stuck, you and your partner can take help from a professional instead of involving too many people in the sensitive aspects of your relationship and creating a mess out of it." She explained, "Try to keep your intimate relationship within the personal boundaries. Of course, if there is domestic violence or abuse, one should reach out to the local authorities. But if there are differences and miscommunication in the relationship that you cannot solve, one can seek professional help. It may end up enhancing the quality of your relationship."