Relationship Boosters Podcast Episode 29

Dr. Kia James

A Communication Killer

Criticism is not keeping it real, It is an attack of your partner.

  • As opposed to stating that you have a concern, you attack your partner by stating that they have a character flaw.
  • You tell your partner, “something is wrong with you.” as opposed to stating that you have a problem about a specific situation or event.
  • The recipient of the criticism many times feels disrespected.
  • Criticism shuts down communication
  • Criticism many time starts with the statement you always or you never.
    • You always make a mess. You never take out the trash.
  • Being critical leads to high level conflict

We all have complaints

I am not saying that you should not communicate your complaints. What I am saying is that you should not justify an attack of your partner due to you being dissatisfied with a situation.

  • A complaint allows your partner to know what you like and don’t like.
  • It opens the door for more communication.
  • You are sharing facts about a specific event or a situation. Sticking to the facts helps.

Attack defend cycle

Being brutally honest without tact does not communicate that you are attempting to solve a problem. This type of critical communication many times puts your partner in a defensive place.  This derails the conversation and problems are not solved. 

Take responsibility for yourself and your behavior.  If you want to have effective communication, don’t begin a conversation in a way that will be unproductive.  If you need additional assistance, check out our mini-course Avoid Turning a Disagreement into an Argument.

More Resources

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