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Effective communication skills

by | Blog, Communication, Relationship | 0 comments

Below is a short discussion on the communication strategy of negotiating a compromise.  Most couples struggle with this and the below may help.  However, whatever kind of relationship you may be in, this skill will be useful.

Negotiating a compromise

Couples do not always agree on everything.  You are two individuals and even though you have come together as a couple, you will have different ideas on some things.  There will always be things that have to be done, such as going to see your in-laws or parenting your child.  It is much better, both for yourselves and for the relationship, to agree on a compromise than feel that you have lost completely and your partner always gets his/her way as this leads to anger and resentment which will come out in the relationship sooner or later.

Follow these steps to negotiate a compromise. 


  1. Use the effective listening steps above
  2. Realise that your partner does not have to do, say or feel what you want to do, what you say or how you feel
  3. Be aware of your position on the topic, i.e. what you currently want and what you would like or not from this negotiation
  4. Tell your partner what your position is in the situation that is under discussion (use non-blaming communication)
  5. Invite your partner to tell you what they would like in the situation that you are discussing
  6. Do not criticise them or shoot them down – you have invited their opinion and it is important to have both of your opinions on the table in order to negotiate
  7. Continue discussions – if necessary ask for clarity if you are not sure of what is meant, etc.
  8. Begin discussion on how you can meet in the middle (this means that both of you will have a little bit of your desire or want satisfied and both of you will have a little bit of your desire or want unsatisfied – this is a compromise)
  9. Continue negotiating until you both are satisfied – this means that you continually talk and then invite your partner to tell you how they feel about that and you reassess the position as you go along
  10. Continue until you make an agreement – an agreement means that you both agree on the outcome
  11. Make sure that you outline this agreement so that you are both clear on what the agreement is and what it is not
  12. Thank your partner for the opportunity and for their willingness to negotiate
  13. You have both won!