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Can You Hear Me Now?

Communication Tips for A Happy Marriage

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Topics couples should discuss include:

• Money

• Careers

• Home/Family Life

• Education

• Health

• Religious/Spiritual Matters

• Past and Present Relationships

• Intimacy Concerns/Physical/Emotional Needs

When talking to each other, Hinnant recommends couples use the following tips:

• Remember you’re on the same team. Whatever happens to one of you really happens to both of you.

• Designate some time each week to reconnect or clear up any leftover business with each other. Make this time a safe place where the two of you can get to know and respect each other.

• Take turns to really listen to one another. Make sure you got it right by recapping with them what they tell you.

• Try to develop empathy with each other and understand what they are experiencing. Put yourself in their place.

• Establish a time out rule that goes into effect when conversations become too hot to handle or is no longer respectful or productive. Establish guidelines for this rule before it needs to go into effect.

• Keep in mind that men and women have different, but equally valid, ways of communicating and dealing with feelings. Educate yourself on these differences so they can be used to enhance the relationship.

• Don’t play the blame game. Instead take ownership of your relationship and the responsibilities that go with it.

• Avoid being defensive. This approach often adds to the problem and makes you say things you may later regret.

• Marriage is a garden that needs constant tending. It’s more than a state of being – it’s an activity!

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