Every relationship needs open and clear communication.
Aside from love, communication and trust are the major keys to any healthy relationship. Lack of effective communication skills often leads to trust issues, stress, misunderstanding, and argument.
Without communication skills, you will have a hard time resolving problems in your relationships.
How are you going to talk about bigger and complicated issues if you cannot even talk about simple matters like each other’s feelings, right?
Most men don’t talk about what they feel and that’s the reason why most women get frustrated — they want men to act like women when it comes to expressing their feelings through words.
But how can you make a man open up and communicate more with you?
Here are 4 ways to learn how to improve your communication skills in a relationship.
1. Let him know that it’s okay to talk about what he feels
Society has taught men that expressing their emotions is a sign of weakness. On the other hand, women can freely talk about their emotions. Women are comfortable talking about what they are feeling without any restraints. They can express how they feel with their body language, facial expression, hand gestures, and even with tears. Women prefer talking about their problems.
Predominantly, men tend to figure out what they are feeling to themselves. They express their feelings through different channels or convert the “feminine” feelings, like weakness and sadness to pride and anger — actions that are expected from them by society.
In healthy relationships, trust, allows you to open up to your partner. So, if you want him to let his guard down, you should tell him that you will accept and understand his emotions. Also, you should make him feel that he is safe to express what he feels when he is with you.
Let him know that opening up to you on how he feels does not make him less of a man and that you appreciate him, even more, when he will do this for you.
2. Ask him open-ended questions
Most men are not talkers and not good at making long conversations with women. Perhaps, you have experience talking to your guy, using a lot of words, and at the end, he will only answer you with one word.
Instead of asking questions that you foresee he would answer in one word — yes, no, fine, maybe — encourage him to give you more detailed answers or get him out of his shell and let him naturally initiate dialogue by asking open-ended questions.
Here are some examples of open-ended questions that you can ask your partner:
- When’s the last time you felt helpless? How did you handle it?
- What are the accomplishments you are proud of?
- What is your happiest memory of your childhood?
- When was the last time you cried and why?
- When’s the last time you pushed out of your comfort zone? How did it make you feel?
3. Go someplace new or special
If your man is having difficulty opening up to you, changing your usual scenery by going somewhere can help him be more relaxed and feel at ease to open up.
Having a vacation whether it’s near or far, a long or short trip will let you reset and escape for a while from the reality. There are a lot of stressors in our lives every day: work, life issues, people around us, or even household chores that can put your relationship to the test.
Detaching yourselves from your usual atmosphere even for a while and making time for each other will allow you to focus on your relationship as a couple. You will learn new things about each other as both of you will have the chance to get out of your comfort zones.
Travelling together can actually strengthen your relationship because it involves constant open communication as you work together to make decisions during your trips.
4. Show that you love and care about him
Sometimes, the reason why some men don’t open up about what they feel is that they are worried that their partner will leave them if they appear weak. Making him feel your love and affection will let him feel more secure in your relationship and he would more likely be comfortable communicating with you. This is because he knows that he can be vulnerable in front of you and that you will not judge him.
You can show your love and affection by being more appreciative of his efforts. You can surprise him with a “Thank You” note, praise him in front of your friends and family, or cook his favourite meal.
Asking for his advice and opinions will also make him feel that he is being valued and that you take what he thinks into consideration.