When was the last time you read your spouse correctly? Do they like it when you bring them gifts? Do you find it difficult to get them to see your point of view? You are talking the wrong language!
Taking the time to find out your signifigant others likes, dislikes and what really matters to them will enable you to better understand the way they operate. It will give you a secret code to unlock a whole new world. It will probably save your hide, too!
I received the following newsletter from The 5 Love Languages website yesterday. This is information we should all be taught, but sadly, getting through each day raising kids, working and trying to pay your taxes on time seem more urgent. See what you think below…
Let’s face it: miscommunications happen all the time.
Things are going well in a relationship. The day is turning out wonderful. But then, it happens. You inadvertently say something in passing and, KABOOM, you find yourself in the middle of a heated argument.
“I didn’t mean it that way.”
“Yes, you did.”
“No, I didn’t. Really.”
You get the gist.
So what can you do when you find yourself in the middle of a communication mishap? Here are three suggestions:
1. Stop talking. Defending yourself may be your instinctual response, especially if the conversation starts to descend into personal attacks and generalities (i.e., you never, you always). Take a moment to breathe. This relationship is obviously important to you, so remember that and let your guard down. Choose your words wisely. Do you really want to argue, or do you want to resolve the conflict?
2. Start listening. If you want to resolve the conflict, you need to be curious as to what may have triggered the rise of emotions in the first place. Was it a fear of disconnection, a past trauma that may have surfaced, stress at an all-time high and a rather small comment just pushed them over the edge? When you are curious to really understand what is happening in them, you are less likely to put up the walls of defense. Listening opens the door to empathy.
3. Express understanding. When there is a miscommunication, often no one is really at fault. You don’t have to admit you were wrong if your motives and intentions were right. However, it is helpful to say something like, “I can certainly understand why you might have been hurt by what I said, but I want you to know that I care deeply about you and would never intentionally hurt you like that.” The goal is to open the door of communication so you can resolve the conflict in a healthy way.
Miscommunications are inevitable, but with some self-awareness and genuine concern for the other person, you can work to resolve the conflicts that arise and grow stronger in your relationships.
Ironically it isn’t what we fight about that causes the problems in our relationships. Its how we appraoch the other people involved. This is why knowing about the 5 Love Languages is such an important tool. Knowing that my husbands Love Language is “Words of Affirmation”, I can give him the details of some frustrating news without blame or accusation. I can let him know that I trust his decisions wholeheartedly, his meaning in my life is beyond measure. I can say that this is difficult but we are a team together while looking for the right solution.
Interesting? Decide which is your Love Language from the list below and then jump on over to take the assessment online to see how well you know yourself.
Love is a choice you make everydayDr. Gary Chapman
- Words of Affirmation: “This language uses words to affirm other people.”
- Acts of Service: “For these people, actions speak louder than words.”
- Receiving Gifts: “For some people, what makes them feel most loved is to receive a gift.”
- Quality Time: “This language is all about giving the other person your undivided attention.”
- Physical Touch: “To this person, nothing speaks more deeply than appropriate touch.”
Visit the 5 Love Languages for quizzes related to couples, singles, kids and many others. You will also find quizes on Apology Language and Anger Assessment.
Cracking the code on relationships will increase not only help you find the “Happiness Button” for family, it will push your personal “Happy Button”, too.