Dear Elizabeth: I want better communication with my family, but they just won’t listen to anything I say. What can I do to get my point of view across. Should I give up. trying to get my point across?
Dear Trying to Get Your Point Across-
Don’t give up. The world revolves around words and the distinctions in language. Communication, therefore, is an access to power and when it’s based on being right or fixing someone, it has a certain quality to it. Being committed to communication requires presence to the conversation outside of past experiences that may color the way a word is spoken or heard.
Have you ever been in a conversation when you’ve thought you’ve “heard this before”? You begin to formulate a reply even before your partner has finished speaking because you are certain of what s/he is about to say next. You have zoned out and are thinking, “blah, blah, blah”; you are not present to the conversation at all, in fact, you are waiting to jump in and to get your point across. This is an early warning sign of “No communication.”
You Have To Give Up Something To Have Healthy Communication
To access the power of communication is to abandon trying to get your point across and really listen and be present to what your partner is saying. Instead of drafting a reply or of a snappy comeback. When communication is important in a relationship, the question becomes what do you have to give up in order to really hear what your partner is saying?
- Are you trying to get your point across because you have to be right?
- Are you holding a grudge from something that happened in the past?
- Are you not acknowledging or accepting what is true for her/him?
- Could you be trying to steer the conversation in the direction of your thinly veiled attempt to “fix” your partner?
Are you willing to give that up in order to truly communicate in your relationship?
Communication Habits Can Nurture Or Destroy Relationships
If you find yourself trying to get your point across over and over again to your partner, it’s a pattern for you. Patterns are no longer about the issue. Rather, the issue becomes that you’re not communicating your feelings in a manner that your partner is hearing. This is a dilemma because it’s about you, and not your partner. To break the pattern, you must change your communication habit. Otherwise, you continue to perpetuate the issue and not solve it every time you have that same conversation, and every time you raise your voice in your attempt to get your point across.
When Motive Is Negative The Result is Negative
Conversation is not a contest if someone contradicts us. By taking the stance that you are right and that your partner is wrong or the one to blame for not understanding, you run the risk of alienating him/her in the relationship. When your motivation is negative, the chance of a positive result is minimal. Blame and judgment never reach the goal of conveying the reality we are attempting to communicate. They only serve to push a wedge between people who are trying to relate to one another.
I Hear And Understand You
Coming to a conversation from a place of acknowledgement opens up an entirely new possibility for you and your partner. There is an abundance of things in which you can acknowledge your partner for. Practice acknowledgement for the peace and harmony you desire in your relationships.
I Want To Hear Your Side
Start by listening for what your partner wants to be acknowledged for, and then acknowledge them for that.Take some inspired action to your next conversation and acknowledge your partner for something, be sure to include how grateful you are for their having done so…. and then lean back and observe where that conversation takes your communication and your relationship.
Elizabeth Viszt BA,MS, a Health & Wellness Coach in New York, is Master of Habit Change around the areas of nutrition, dieting, and personal relationships.
Reach Out Recovery Exclusive By: Elizabeth Viszt