DrConnections
A great marriage doesn’t just happen. It grows over time with a successful exchange of ideas and feelings. If your union doesn’t feel so unified, take heart. Here are five steps to create effective communication in your marriage....
Effective communication in marriage by Carol Hatcher

A great marriage doesn’t just happen. It grows over time with a successful exchange of ideas and feelings. If your union doesn’t feel so unified, take heart. Here are five steps to create effective communication in your marriage.

Allow time to download
Whether you work inside the home or out, take time to listen to your spouse talk about what has happened since you’ve seen each other last. Afterward, you can talk about more important issues like whose turn it is to change the baby.

Find moments to talk
Between you or your kids' activities, finding a minute to chat with your mate can be challenging. Hunt for tiny pockets of time where you can sit and share your dreams or discuss what your crazy Aunt Myrtle wore to the reunion. Your conversation doesn’t have to be life altering; sometimes it’s the simple chatter that helps create closeness.

Listen with your whole body
Let your husband or wife know they are important by your body language. Face your spouse when they speak. Look at them. Don’t sit with your arms crossed, waiting for them to finish. Turn off the television and cell phone.

Be specific
Each of us secretly desires our spouse to magically know exactly what we want and how we want it. Unfortunately, there are no magic genies to grant that knowledge. Be specific when communicating your expectations. It’ll save you a lot of heartache.

Tackle the tricky topics
Certain topics are uncomfortable. For some it may be issues in the bedroom. Others may find difficultly discussing health problems or meddlesome extended family. Initiating the conversation may be awkward, but the payoff is worth it.

Working towards effective communication is a worthwhile investment. And remember, your marriage can last a lifetime.

Carol Hatcher A former elementary school teacher turned writer. This southern belle lives with her husband and three children in Buford, GA.