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Maintain A Successful Long Distance Relationship is Less Harder If You Understand Your Partner’s Attachment Style

Maintain A Successful Long Distance Relationship is Less Harder If You Understand Your Partner’s Attachment Style

The adage “out of sight is out of mind” is more fitting in relationships than is “absence makes the heart grow fonder”. Clichés as they both might be, long distance relationships are indeed no cakewalk and need far more effort and patience to maintain than a normal relationship where people live together or live in the same city and meet up often. Long distance relationships are hard to maintain simply because bringing the physical gap of not being able to see each other often, not knowing what the person is up to and even seeing your loved one in the presence of other people is a tough nut to crack! Also, it might have something to do with our attachment styles! [1]

Your attachment styles can predict the success of your long distance relationship.

    Photo credit: Source

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    We all have specific behaviors, when it comes to romance, which remain unchanged, even if we change partners. Many of us are often dubbed as clingy, or commitment-phobic, or even too independent when it comes to our relationships and basically, it all boils down to our specific attachment styles. [2]

    Attachment styles are simply the way we behave with our loved one, and this behavior of ours then can make a relationship smooth and enjoyable to be in, or bumpy with too much strife and expectations. Remember that attachment styles can change with a big change in life – things like pregnancy, a new baby, adoption, a sudden financial crisis, the loss of a job, an accident or injury. [3]

    Now the thing with attachment styles is that depending on the kind we have or are, and depending on the kind of attachment style our loved on has, is key to making a relationship work, or not!

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      Photo credit: Source

      Secure Attachment

      If you grew up in a warm, safe and loving environment then you are the kind who feels secure in your relationship with your partner, are close to him or her but still respect individuality and independence in a relationship. You are the kind who can be with any kind of attachment type, and most likely to make a long distance relationship work to your advantage as well. [4]

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      Anxious-Preoccupied Attachment

      If you are the anxious attachment type, you are likely to be the one most partners describe as clingy, possessive and even stifling. You often remain worried about the future of your relationship and depend on your partner for your happiness and fulfillment. You might find it difficult to maintain a long-distance relationship as your demanding nature will not find satisfaction in not getting the due attention over the distance. [5]

      Dismissive-Avoidant Attachment

      So, you are the one who would probably thrive in a long distance relationship for you probably like to keep detached from your partner and may not even consider him or her that important, to begin with. You are likely to come off as cold, distant and perhaps even narcissistic in nature. [6]

      Fearful-Avoidant Attachment

      You are the one everyone dubs as commitment-phobic. Being in a relationship is scary enough for you, naming it and establishing concrete boundaries makes you run strike back and be rather moody. A long distance relationship should work for you as well as you basically like some distance between you and your significant other. [7]

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      Do the right thing based on you and your partner’s attachment styles to sustain the LDR!

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        If you’ve already had a failed long distance relationship and fear being in another one since you took that failure personally, well don’t, on all counts. Your failure may not have been your fault or even the other’s, rather it may be a relationship doomed to fail due to different attachment styles. But does that mean that you can never be successful in a long distance relationship, like ever?

        Of course not! We all can be successful at anything we so wish to if we only put in a little effort and also change ourselves a tad. Depending on your attachment style, here’s what you need to do, to make it work! And mostly, the work remains the same – trust, patience and a lot of loving attention along with space given! [8]

        • Secure Attachment: You are the kind of person who remains happy and loved in any circumstance of your relationship, distance immaterial. The problem in a long distance relationship will arise if you are with a person who has an anxious attachment type. Your security in the relationship could be mistaken for taking the relationship for granted, so you might need to shower some special attention on your “clingy” partner.
        • Anxious Attachment: You need constant reassurance in every relationship and a long distance relationship is particularly hard for you to maintain. If your partner is also anxious-preoccupied, frankly, the long distance may not work out for either one of you for both of you need to remain in constant touch with each other. If your partner is a secure attachment type, then remember that he or she is happy in your relationship and you need not feel abandoned or ignored. Your avoidance attachment partner is likely to be the happiest in this long distance relationship and may need a gentle reminder every now and then that you need attention too.
        • Avoidance Attachment: So your secure partner may not be affected by the distance or even the various emotional phobias you have, and in case your partner is also the avoidance attachment type then you guys would probably revel in the relationship you have over the miles. But if your partner is anxious attachment type, Houston, we have a problem! You need to get over yourself and give a little part of you over the phone or the chat to your loved one to make sure the distance does not stress out your already hyper anxious partner. And with the distance, a little more attention should be easy for you to maintain as well.

        Remember that all relationships are same only in that they all need work, effort and plenty of love to work. Mostly, if the love is there, you can make it work – distance be darned! That said; a long distance relationship does need that extra bit of effort more to retain the spark for an ending that’s equally bright and happy!

        Reference

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        1 19 Golden Pieces of Relationship Advice From the Experts 2 Signs Of Low Self-Esteem And The Root Causes You Might Not Know 3 How to Communicate Effectively in Any Relationship 4 How to Live in the Moment and Stop Worrying About the Past or Future 5 This Is What Happens When You Move Out Of the Comfort Zone

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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.

        More Articles About Effective Communication

        Featured photo credit: Kenan Buhic via unsplash.com

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