Most people come in saying they want better communication tools. I think what people really want is to learn why they can’t use good communication tools when they need them the most. So here are the good communication tools for free, if you can implement these when needed - no need to see me!
Assume the Best
“You probably have a good reason, but can you let me know why you weren’t able to get to the grocery store?”
Speak from I not You
“I’m feeling anxious and overwhelmed, I need a minute to calm down.”
Explain Yourself and Be Curious
“That hurt my feelings a little, I don’t understand why that happened. Can you help me understand your position on this?”
Ask for Your Clear Emotional Need
“It’s so hard for me when you need alone time to decompress after a fight - can you reassure me that we’re ok before you go?”
Listen and Respond Without Defensiveness
“Wow, it’s hard for me to hear I hurt you that badly. I didn’t intend that, but I see I really did. I’m really sorry, and I get why that was so painful for you.”
Respect Other’s Needs (even when confusing)
“I don’t understand why you feel that way, but I hear that you do feel that way and I know that’s real. Can you help me understand more of why this makes you feel that way?”
Absolutely Do Not Use Contempt
No demeaning, talking down, name-calling, sarcasm, or mocking. It is the #1 predictor of divorce.