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10 Things About Relationships I Learned From My Parents

10 Things About Relationships I Learned From My Parents

Kids learn a lot by watching and seeing how their parents go about certain situations.  One of the biggest things kids pick up at an early age is what to expect out of someone they are in a relationship. I was very lucky to be able to grow up and watch what it is like for to people to be in love, and it has taught me a lot about relationships and what I can do to thrive in the one I am lucky to be in now.

1. Learn to love each other’s flaws

Whatever the reasons are that made you fall in love with your significant other, there are bound to be some sort of flaws that surface throughout the relationship, and one thing that I have learned from my parents is that by learning to love the other persons flaws, you end up feeling more closer to who they truly are than before.  If you are like my step dad who was able to love my mom, even though she had us three kids, and even better, love us, and take care of us like we were his own flesh and blood, you truly understand this concept.

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2. You do not have to enjoy everything they do

It may seem like that your significant other would want you to enjoy everything that they do, but we all know that its not always going to be like that.  If you both like to go watch the races every Sunday together, that is great! Just don’t feel like you have to learn to like it to make your S.O. happy.

3. Giving each other space is equally important to spending time together

There is definitely such a thing as spending too much time together.  I’ve witnessed this, as well as went through this myself.  You start to feel a bit annoyed with you S.O. and just want some space, and that is okay!  This is the perfect opportunity to go and do the things that your S.O. doesn’t enjoy to do, and when you are reunited you have new stories, and a new found appreciation for their presence again!

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4. Compromise

When there are times where it isn’t feasible to do things separate, compromise is a key attribute to have.  By saying that you will do what he/she wants to do this time, if you guys can do what you want to do the next time, it makes choosing easier and everybody is happy in the end.

5. It is important to respect their family

This may seem like a no brainer, but it is often overlooked.  If you are not as their close to your family as your S.O. is to theirs, you may sometimes come off a little uncaring when it comes to things that involve their side.  Their family is who made them who they are as a person today, so it is important to respect any differences they may have, and to try to get along with them.  It will definitely mean a whole lot to them, and after all, you want to make sure they are happy, right?

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6. Appreciate what each other has to give

You both play key roles in the relationships more than just romantically.  Whether it comes down to who brings home more money each month, or who does more of the domestic work, you should appreciate what the other one has to offer.  That is something my parents are always good at doing.

7. Do not let chivalry die, fellas

My (step) father truly taught me how to treat a lady, and that’s just what he did for my mom.  There is nothing wrong with holding the door open when out in public, opening her car door for her, or giving her your jacket when she is cold.  It makes a girl feel really good when a man does these little things for her, and it really takes no effort to do them.

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8. Ladies, it is okay to cater to your man

If your guy takes the time to do the things for you that I wrote in #7, I hope you understand its okay to cater to him every now, and again. Make him dinner, fold his clothes, or whatever you can do to help him out.  This makes a guy feel really appreciated, and will make him crazy for you.  I’m not suggesting do everything for him all the time, but especially if he is the primary bread winner of the house, it would make his days.

9. Communication is crucial

I’ve seen times where my parents would run into conflict due to lack of communication.  It makes things easier for everybody if you both communicate on a regular basis, this way you are both on the same page with current issues, and plans that you may have.

10. Just remember, arguing is normal

Nobody is perfect!  Things are going to happen, you two will argue more than you may think, its just how you handle the situation is what will make or break the relationship.  If you do not escalate the situation even further than it needs to be, usually the problems can be resolved fairly quickly.  I’ve seen this between my parents, and through years of marriage, not one of them has ever taken it too far, or walked out.  Just remember, you both are adults, you both love each other, and you can get through this together.

Featured photo credit: https://pixabay.com/en/users/Unsplash-242387/ via pixabay.com

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Michael Daws

Aircraft Painter, Sports & Lifestyle Blogger

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Last Updated on May 21, 2019

How to Communicate Effectively in Any Relationship

How to Communicate Effectively in Any Relationship

For all our social media bravado, we live in a society where communication is seen less as an art, and more as a perfunctory exercise. We spend so much time with people, yet we struggle with how to meaningfully communicate.

If you believe you have mastered effective communication, scan the list below and see whether you can see yourself in any of the examples:

Example 1

You are uncomfortable with a person’s actions or comments, and rather than telling the individual immediately, you sidestep the issue and attempt to move on as though the offending behavior or comment never happened.

You move on with the relationship and develop a pattern of not addressing challenging situations. Before long, the person with whom you are in relationship will say or do something that pushes you over the top and predictably, you explode or withdraw completely from the relationship.

In this example, hard-to-speak truths become never- expressed truths that turn into resentment and anger.

Example 2

You communicate from the head and without emotion. While what you communicate makes perfect sense to you, it comes across as cold because it lacks emotion.

People do not understand what motivates you to say what you say, and without sharing your feelings and emotions, others experience you as rude, cold or aggressive.

You will know this is a problem if people shy away from you, ignore your contributions in meetings or tell you your words hurt. You can also know you struggle in this area if you find yourself constantly apologizing for things you have said.

Example 3

You have an issue with one person, but you communicate your problem to an entirely different person.

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The person in whom you confide lacks the authority to resolve the matter troubling you, and while you have vented and expressed frustration, the underlying challenge is unresolved.

Example 4

You grew up in a family with destructive communication habits and those habits play out in your current relationships.

Because you have never stopped to ask why you communicate the way you do and whether your communication style still works, you may lack understanding of how your words impact others and how to implement positive change.

If you find yourself in any of the situations described above, this article is for you.

Communication can build or decimate worlds and it is important we get it right. Regardless of your professional aspirations or personal goals, you can improve your communication skills if you:

  • Understand your own communication style
  • Tailor your style depending on the needs of the audience
  • Communicate with precision and care
  • Be mindful of your delivery, timing and messenger

1. Understand Your Communication Style

To communicate effectively, you must understand the communication legacy passed down from our parents, grandparents or caregivers. Each of us grew up with spoken and unspoken rules about communication.

In some families, direct communication is practiced and honored. In other families, family members are encouraged to shy away from difficult conversations. Some families appreciate open and frank dialogue and others do not. Other families practice silence about substantive matters, that is, they seldom or rarely broach difficult conversations at all.

Before you can appreciate the nuance required in communication, it helps to know the familial patterns you grew up with.

2. Learn Others Communication Styles

Communicating effectively requires you to take a step back, assess the intended recipient of your communication and think through how the individual prefers to be communicated with. Once you know this, you can tailor your message in a way that increases the likelihood of being heard. This also prevents you from assuming the way you communicate with one group is appropriate or right for all groups or people.

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If you are unsure how to determine the styles of the groups or persons with whom you are interacting, you can always ask them:

“How do you prefer to receive information?”

This approach requires listening, both to what the individuals say as well as what is unspoken. Virgin Group CEO Richard Branson noted that the best communicators are also great listeners.

To communicate effectively from relationship to relationship and situation to situation, you must understand the communication needs of others.

3. Exercise Precision and Care

A recent engagement underscored for me the importance of exercising care when communicating.

On a recent trip to Ohio, I decided to meet up with an old friend to go for a walk. As we strolled through the soccer park, my friend gently announced that he had something to talk about, he was upset with me. His introduction to the problem allowed me to mentally shift gears and prepare for the conversation.

Shortly after introducing the shift in conversation, my friend asked me why I didn’t invite him to the launch party for my business. He lives in Ohio and I live in the D.C. area.

I explained that the event snuck up on me, and I only started planning the invite list three weeks before the event. Due to the last-minute nature of the gathering, I opted to invite people in the DMV area versus my friends from outside the area – I didn’t want to be disrespectful by asking them to travel on such short notice.

I also noted that I didn’t want to be disappointed if he and others declined to come to the event. So I played it safe in terms of inviting people who were local.

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In the moment, I felt the conversation went very well. I also checked in with my friend a few days after our walk, affirmed my appreciation for his willingness to communicate his upset and our ability to work through it.

The way this conversation unfolded exemplified effective communication. My friend approached me with grace and vulnerability. He approached me with a level of curiosity that didn’t put me on my heels — I was able to really listen to what he was saying, apologize for how my decision impacted him and vow that going forward, I would always ask rather than making decisions for him and others.

Our relationship is intact, and I now have information that will help me become a better friend to him and others.

4. Be Mindful of Delivery, Timing and Messenger

Communicating effectively also requires thinking through the delivery of the message one intends to communicate as well as the appropriate time for the discussion.

In an Entrepreneur.com column, VIP Contributor Deep Patel, noted that persons interested in communicating well need to master the art of timing. Patel noted,[1]

“Great comedians, like all great communicators, are able to feel out their audience to determine when to move on to a new topic or when to reiterate an idea.”

Communicating effectively also requires thoughtfulness about the messenger. A person prone to dramatic, angry outbursts should never be called upon to deliver constructive feedback, especially to people whom they do not know. The immediate aftermath of a mass shooting is not the ideal time to talk about the importance of the Second Amendment rights.

Like everyone else, I must work to ensure my communication is layered with precision and care.

It requires precision because words must be carefully tailored to the person with whom you are speaking.

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It requires intentionality because before one communicates, one should think about the audience and what the audience needs in order to hear your message the way you intended it to be communicated.

It requires active listening which is about hearing verbal and nonverbal messages.

Even though we may be right in what we say, how we say it could derail the impact of the message and the other parties’ ability to hear the message.

Communicating with care is also about saying things that the people in our life need to hear and doing so with love.

The Bottom Line

When I left the meeting with my dear friend, I wondered if I was replicating or modeling this level of openness and transparency in the rest of my relationships.

I was intrigued and appreciative. He’d clearly thought about what he wanted to say to me, picked the appropriate time to share his feedback and then delivered it with care. He hit the ball out of the park and I’m hopeful we all do the same.

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Featured photo credit: Kenan Buhic via unsplash.com

Reference

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