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Strengthening Communication in Your Relationship


                                     Strong Communication (Image Source)

Communication is an essential component of any relationship. Without it, conflicts arise that can result in something that is so beautiful becoming so grotesque. Communication requires more than being able to express your thoughts. Instead, it requires active listening, being able to remove blame, and thinking objectively instead of emotionally.

Active Listening

It can be very easy to say what you want to say. In fact, both of you maybe so eager to express your thoughts that you forget to listen to what is really being said. An article published on the blog outlines the following tips for effective and active listening:

  1. Face the speaker
  2. Maintain eye contact
  3. Minimize external and internal distractions
  4. Respond at appropriate intervals
  5. Focus on solely on what the speaker is saying instead of thinking about what you’re going to say next
  6. Keep an open mind
  7. Avoid offering advice unless asked
  8. Give the speaker time to finish even if they are launching a verbal attack on you
  9. Clarify by asking questions

So, the next time you are having a conversation with your partner, incorporate the aforementioned tips and see if you are better able to communicate.

Use “I” Statements

Regardless of how upset you are, it can be very difficult for someone to accept your point if you are accusing him or her. Instead of beginning your conversation with accusatory statements, use “I” statements to express how you feel. For instance, if you feel like your partner doesn’t do enough around the house don’t say “You are so lazy. Can’t you do anything to help me?”Instead say something like “John, I feel over worked and I am very tired when I get home from work in the evenings. I know that you are also tired, but can you help me to wash up the dishes and straighten the furniture in the evenings?” You would be surprised by how easily your partner responds.

Think Objectively

Women especially are very emotional beings. Sometimes our thinking defies logic and can drive our partner’s crazy. It is, therefore, important for us to make a conscious effort to think objectively about what our partner is saying instead of taking it personally. Also, if you think you are misunderstanding what is being said, clarify by asking questions. For instance, if a woman is out with her man and sees him giving a casual glance at another woman, she is going to react emotionally. However, if she considers the fact that he was not blatantly staring at the woman and wasn’t even flirting with her then she will agree that there is no need to blow what he did out of proportion.


A strong relationship is grounded in love, commitment, and effective communication. Use these tips to help you improve communication in your relationship.



Five Tips to Overcome the "Speech Jitters"

Image Public speaking is something many of us dread. Although there are some people who are masters of the craft, the vast majority of us either begin to get sweaty palms or develop the sudden compulsion to use the bathroom whenever we have to speak in front of a group of people. Is there hope for those of us with the “speech jitters”?   Franklin D. Roosevelt once said “The only thing we have to fear is fear itself” and, if we are to accept his statement, we will realize that we can overcome our fears of public speaking by following these five tips.

Tip No. 1: Know Your Audience

If we truly get to understand who our audience is, we will truly be able to craft a speech that will appeal to their interests. When the audience is interested, our fear gradually diminishes. For example, if you are making a presentation to students at a high school about following their dreams, then it may be a good idea for you to develop a highly entertaining speech involving audio and visual references. Young people love excitement and once you are able to grab and maintain their interest, you will be able to have confidence in your presentation.

Tip No. 2: Practice

One of the key concepts the Toastmasters program teaches its participants is the importance of practicing your speech. Stand up in front of a mirror and time yourself as you make your speech. As you look at your reflection, take note of your gestures and facial expressions and ensure that you are not overdoing either of them. Additionally, you can practice in front of your friends or relatives and allow them to give you feedback so that you can make improvements if necessary. Being fully prepared to make your speech will give you some of the confidence you need to overcome your fear of public speaking.

Tip No.3: Research

In order to write the best possible speech, it is important for you to research your topic. Instead of just presenting your own thoughts and opinions, find articles or books that support your claims. People have more respect for someone who takes the time to properly craft his or her speech.

Tip No. 4: Focus on Something or Someone in the Room

If you are still extremely nervous, it may be helpful for you to pick someone from the audience to focus on while you are presenting your speech. This may help you to feel as though you are having a conversation with someone instead of an entire auditorium full of people. As you build more confidence, you can maintain eye contact with more than one person in the room and therefore better engage the audience.



Tip No. 5: Walk Around

When I am extremely nervous I tend to pace around a room because it has somewhat of a calming effect. I am not saying that you should pace when making your speech, but you can change your position at instances where you feel the nerves kicking in. Many people stay behind a lectern or podium and speak to the audience but changing that routine a bit can help to alleviate some of the fears you have.

Public speaking seems like a daunting task for many but it is something that we all can do once we overcome our fears. I believe that if you follow these tips you will be able to become the confident public speaker you want to be.