Communication and Negotiation
Communication and negotiation are important parts of a successful relationship. In any relationship there are going to be times where you disagree, you have different goals, or misaligned needs. In these situations, it’s particularly important to have strong communication and negotiation skills that will allow you to find either a fair compromise or a win-win solution for both of you. Developing or improving these skills will benefit couples who have been together for many years, those new on their journey together, and everyone in-between!
Symptoms & signs of communication and negotiation issues
- Feeling as if you’re not being heard
- Feeling like you don’t understand your partner
- Your partner expressing that they feel like they’re not being understood or heard
- Inability to compromise (one of you seems to get their way more often)
- Resentment for having to constantly compromise
- Guilt for not compromising
- Impatience with your partner
- Nervousness when talking with your partner about difficult subjects
- Inability to express your needs
- Unwillingness (or an inability) to have an open-minded conversation
- Avoiding conversation with your partner altogether
- Regular bickering or arguing
- Feeling unhappy in the relationship
When is it time to get help?
Generally, the sooner you seek help for any concerns, the better. Unhealthy patterns of communication or behaviour get harder to re-set the longer they’ve been established. Problems tend to get bigger with time – so the sooner you get support, the easier it is to solve those problems. If you and/or your partner are feeling unfulfilled, trapped, unheard, lonely, neglected, or considering an affair – you should connect with a therapist.
Communication and negotiation issues treatment methods
Together with your therapist you will determine the best approach to gaining better communication and negotiation skills. Depending on any underlying issues within your relationships, your therapist may also recommend specific and proven treatment couples therapy methods such as:
- Gottman’s couples therapy believes that couples need to be able to work on becoming better friends, learn to manage conflict, and create ways to support each other’s hopes for the future. The foundation of Gottman couples therapy is based on Dr. John and Julie Gottman’s 40+ years of clinical experience and research that is based on interventions and exercises that are structured, goal-oriented and scientifically based.
- Gottman relationship checkup is a questionnaire that is composed of 480 questions about friendship, intimacy, emotions, conflict, values, and trust, as well as parenting, housework, finances, individual areas of concern, and more. It’s designed as a tool for use by the therapists at Insight Psychological in a therapeutic setting.
- Emotionally focused therapy is based on observations and experience – it looks at emotions and emotional intelligence, which helps support stronger and more secure relationships by helping better understand how our actions impact others, and how our emotions drive our interaction.
- Behavioural therapy tends to view human beings and behaviour with the assumption that humans are a product of their sociocultural conditioning and environment, looking at the current problems and the factors influencing them and emphasizes behaviour changes more than the underlying unconscious processes.
What will I get out of treatment with Insight Psychological?
Our therapists will support you and provide you with the skills needed to improve how you communicate and negotiate in your relationship. We can share coping strategies and tools that you can use to help you and your partner as well as assist you in setting realistic goals and timelines for those goals. With support and direction, you and your partner can come out of counselling with a better understanding of how to communicate and negotiate with one another.