Relationships #3 – This is a training I've done several times for the missionaries. The missionaries seem to really enjoy learning about communication and have requested this paper a few times. I think many of them have their eyes opened that they are communicating in negative ways "that they never had supposed". Missions are great for opening hearts up for learning.:)
The level of misery in a relationship is equivalent to the amount of distance between Expectation and Reality. If you want to feel different, bring your expectation in line with reality.
Expecting Perfect = You’ll always be dissatisfied
Expecting Magic = You’ll always be disappointed
Understand your companion – What are their strengths, what are their weaknesses, what kind of personality do they have? Accept them for who they are. Then bring your expectations in line with who they realistically are and what they can give.
Tools to have a good relationship – Communication
Quality of communication determines Quality of Relationship
Building, Kind, Sweet Comm. = Safe, Trusting, Edifying Relationship
Hurtful, Deeming, Manipulative Comm. = Hurtful, Mistrustful, Unhealthy Relationship
What are you communicating? Do you do these things?
Elements of Negative Communication – Don’t Label, Attack, or Criticize
· One Truth (I’m right, your wrong)
· Blame (It’s all your fault)
· Martyrdom (Poor me)
· Put downs (Your such a….)
· Hopelessness (Why even try)
· Demanding (Has to be my way)
· Denial (I’m not hurt, angry… “Nothings wrong”)
· Passive/Aggressive (Silent Treatment)
· Self Blame, Inflict Guilt (It’s all my fault)
· Fixer (Let me help fix you)
· Defensive/Counter Attack
Elements of Positive Communication
· Listen to Understand (Understand first then seek to be understood)
· Reflect Back (Restate what the person is expressing)
· Express your feelings openly and directly in a kind, thoughtful way
· Encourage other person to express his/her feelings by asking questions that increase your understanding
· I feel, about, because statements
· Be open to your not perfect, or right, your just expressing your feelings
Be Proactive – Solve problems quickly, upfront, and open, before you are mad. Avoid Manipulation or Power/Control Attitude.
Be Brave and Pray the entire time you are dealing with a problem. The Lord can soften your heart and reveal what will be helpful.
Steps to solving the problem:
1. 1. See your part first and try to let go of hard feelings. Always seek to understand clearly what your part of the problem was. Start with you first! That is what you can control. Look at your pride; how you’re seeing things as: my way is right, I know more or what is best, or you have to be wrong so I can be right attitude. Ask, what am I doing that is causing the problem? Then fix you. Moroni 7:45-48. Let Go. Forgive.
2. 2. If you can’t let go then communication is next. Use positive communication! Communication is important when something isn’t right, you need understanding so you can love, and correct behavior (yours or theirs).
· Most important thing in solving your problem – Go to me and thee alone while demonstrating elements of positive communication above. If you go to everyone else and talk about how you feel you give your darkness to all. Instead solve your problem with the person it concerns.
Behavior- Be about solving your problem, not being justified and keeping your problem close to your heart. Matt 18:15, D&C 42:88. Pray to have a change of heart.
Doctrine – Be merciful, judge righteously, what you give out you will get in return. Alma 41:13-15 (See if you can find other doctrine.)
3. 3. Compromise. It is important for each person to feel heard and valued. Both parties are important and are valuable in the partnership. If you think it should be your way or that you are right, you can know you are being prideful and the spirit will not be with you. Be open, listen, and know the way others want to do things is ok.