There are some conversations that are difficult to have – pure and simple! We all experience them at some point in our lives. There are those topics that everyone finds difficult, for example, divorce. But there are then topics that you may find difficult whereas someone else would not. The topic being discussed does not really matter in terms of how you approach such a situation. It is all about being prepared and having the conversation in the right way. With that being said, continue reading to discover some pieces of advice for having tough conversations with your partner. We hope that this will help you to address any issues you are having.
Stay optimistic – No matter what you are going to be discussing, it is important to stay optimistic. It is easy to feel like the situation is hopeless. However, when you do this, you can easily start interpreting everything that your partner says with a big dose of pessimism. Don’t feel like the situation is doomed. If you have this attitude, you will never get to a resolution.
Do not bring up things that happened in the past – One of the biggest mistakes that people make when having difficult conversations with their partner is bringing up past issues that are irrelevant to what you are discussing right now. When people get heated, they start bringing up things for the sake of point-scoring, and this is never a good idea. Your conversation will not end up being productive if you take this approach. In fact, you will probably find that you only end up having an argument, and so you will take steps backwards rather than taking steps forward. Therefore, it is imperative to make sure that you stay focused on the tasks at hand. What is the issue you are discussing? Stay focused on this, and do not simply start bringing up things that are irrelevant. You need to work toward something productive rather than simply arguing for the sake of arguing.
Do your research first – If you are discussing a big change in your life, for example, sending a loved one to a rehab center or having no more children, you need to do your research before diving right in. If the latter is the case, you will want to explore the different options available, so that your partner has the full picture. Coming into a conversation without any of the facts or information can be a recipe for disaster.
Choose the right time to talk – There definitely is a right time to talk. Make sure that you are both feeling refreshed and that you are ready to discuss the task at hand. You should not discuss important issues while the television is on in the background. You also need to ensure that your minds are free to discuss the issue in question. If you have had a very stressful day at work, for example, or your partner is dealing with work stress, it probably does not make sense to bring up other issues right now, as they may not end up being productive. Instead, make sure you set aside a specific amount of time to talk about the issue in question. Moreover, make sure that you actually focus on the discussion and nothing else.
Agree on common goals – Another tip for having a difficult conversation with your partner is to have common goals. This is important in any sort of negotiation. After all, the outcome is going to be a lot more satisfying if all of the people involved deciding on what they believe is a set of results that is acceptable. It is vital, nevertheless, that you do not enter into a discussion with an outcome that is predetermined in your mind.
Decide what battles are worth fighting – You can agree to disagree on certain issues. You are not going to be on the same page with everything, and that is okay. You need to think about what battles are worth fighting. Moreover, identify any differences in agreement that really don’t matter when it comes to the overall issue and the end goal.
Try to leave “but” sentences out of it – Another tip for ensuring that conversations go as smoothly as possible is to try and leave sentences with “but” in them out of it. A lot of people try to soften the blow of bad news with the word “but” however, this means you raise someone’s hopes up before the “but” and then bring them down, and so it is not always a great way to go about it.
Recognise when outside help would be beneficial for you and your partner – Last but not least, we would definitely recommend that you consider seeking outside help if and when needed. Some people are unable to resolve issues on their own. This does not mean that you are never going to be able to resolve the problems, though. A bit of outside help can go a very long way. You will have someone who is trained in helping people with relationship issues. You will also have someone who is objective and will not take sides. This can help you to really get to the bottom of the issues you are experiencing so that you can move forward in a productive and effective manner.
Final words on how to talk about difficult things with your partner
If you follow the tips that have been provided above, you can go a long way to ensuring that the difficult conversation you have with your partner goes as well as can be expected. No matter what you are discussing it is important to be prepared. Good luck! Remember, you may need to have more than one conversation in order to find some common ground and achieve your goal. However, everyone needs to start somewhere, so don’t delay in getting to the bottom of the issues you are experiencing and enjoying a brighter and happier future together.