Sex, Relationships & Love

A Short Guide to Effective Communication (especially when things are popping off)

Posted By

On Jan 9, 2023

Any relationship expert worth their coins will tell you, to make any relationship work you have to communicate well. Learning how to engage with another person is not easy and communication, be it with a friend, lover, sibling, co-worker or random on the street isn’t always easy.

The world is full of misunderstandings and different points of view which sometimes can clash, leaving people feeling unseen and unheard.

So in true HOLAA! fashion here are some tips for good chats and communication.

Tip #1: Use ‘I’ statements. When having conversations, we may get kind of accusatory. We can come at folx with ‘you do this’ and ‘you do that’. Try using ‘I feel’ and ‘I think’ to show that this is your point of view and not an absolute truth (absolute truth is a scam). 

Tip #2: Practice active listening. Actually, hear what the person is saying. Don’t just wait for them to finish so you can jump in. Check that main character energy. If tensions are getting too high and no one is hearing each other, it’s OK to take a break and come back to the convo later. Just hit pause.

Tip #3: Turn your feelings into a request: For instance, if your partner is always on the phone instead of saying, “You’re on your phone all the time,” say “Hey babe, tonight I’m cooking a really nice dinner and I would love for us to have a phone free evening. If you’re down for that, that would mean a lot to me?’ Same result with less potential for fights. 

Tip #4: Beware of threatening gestures: Sitting eye-to-eye is one of the best ways to minimise threatening gestures. Try not to sit with your arms crossed, or leaned back all snarky or in a way that you personally would find threatening. Face the person and open up your body language.

Having open and relaxed body language will mitigate any potential fight or flight signals because your brain automatically responds to movements caught in your peripheral vision as more threatening.

Tip #5: Check your reactions: Be aware (and mindful) and take responsibility for your facial expressions, gestures, body postures, and tone of voice that your partner might interpret as threatening.

If you trip their threat response wire, the calm and effective communication will be over.

So, check yourself on threatening gestures such as: rolling your eyes, raising your voice, crossing your arms and turning away from them when they are speaking to you.

Tip #6: Don’t be rude, fam: Sighing loudly when you don’t like what you’re hearing, clicking your tongue, checking your phone and cussing them out (e.g. flipping them off) is just counterproductive and mean. It will wreck any attempts to communicate.

Remember you will not always get communication right and fights and arguments happen, so be kind and patient with yourselves and others. Growing this skill takes time.


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