Secrets of Effective Communication –

Further thoughts on how to best talk things out with your partner and get your needs met.

One way relationships last long term is by having effective communication. We hear this term a lot, but how exactly do we measure “effective”? Studies show that using “I” statements, along with active listening and conveying empathy are keys to effective communication.  In the case of relationships between two people, one of the major ways of measuring effective communication is in how we convey our needs to our partner.  These needs run the gamut of emotional, intellectual, physical, logistical, sexual, and financial. Relationships suffer when either partner feels a lack of satisfaction with the other’s ability to satisfy their needs at any given time.

To be sure, all needs are not meant to be met by our partners. We live in an age where we expect our mate to be an all-in-one lover, therapist, breadwinner, cook, teacher, planner, filer—the list is endless.  While each partner must come to his or her own realistic expectations of the other, the common thread in any need is the desire to feel supported and unified, to feel like you’re both in this together, like neither one is alone in their efforts to take care of the couple and family unit, nor is either alone in sharing their individual experiences with the other.

Here are two secrets of effective communication whereby both men and women can convey their needs to their partners….

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Alicia H. Clark, PsyD