love

Communication: The Making Or Breaking of a Relationship

Communication is extremely important in developing a relationship with someone. It sets the tone for the kind of connection, chemistry and understanding you’ll have of each other. How you communicate provides insight as to if you will remain an acquaintance or friends with your love interest or become something more. Unfortunately, poor communication is a reason why relationship never evolve or why couples call it quits. Communication can make or break a relationship.

There are various contributing factors to poor communication. Self-centeredness is one of them. It’s difficult communicating to someone when the attention is always on them—just about 99 % of the time. The 1% of the attention given to you comes in two questions. “Why are you so quiet? Or why aren’t you saying anything?” And I’m sure you’re thinking inside your head, “Because you’re self-centered,” but you don’t say anything out of fear of offending the person or creating an awkward atmosphere after. However, if you’re okay with having your attention drawn to a stage of someone’s world and existence, hearing more “I’s” than “We’s” used in a conversation, and consuming only their views, perspectives or interest, because yours doesn’t count, perhaps you shouldn’t say anything. Talking to someone who’s self-centered is draining. When the mind is idle in a way, that you aren’t using it to contribute or give input into a conversation, because what’s being said isn’t conducive to having a balance discussion, you’ll be left depleted. Self-centered people are often self-absorbed and selfish. This doesn’t suggest that they don’t have other positive qualities about them like ambition, a caring heart, business-savvy, successful, church going, etc.. It’s just that they aren’t conscious or considerate of your thoughts, feelings and personal interest, and no one may have told them so. If you’re dating someone who’s self-centered, you may want to ask yourself, do you want to fight to have balanced attention and conversation? Love can’t flow in self-centeredness.

Talking too much is another could also break a relationship. Now, if you do talk a lot, I’m not taking a shot at you. This isn’t the objective of this blog. I’m raising awareness to what communication is and what it looks like. There’s nothing wrong with being talkative, however, life is about balance. A conversation should have balance. Talking too much is forgetting that another person is in front of you, and they have an attention span. If you’re sitting in a classroom lecture, you are the sponge. But since, we’re talking about relationships, you shouldn’t feel you’re in a classroom lecture. The person you’re interested in may have something to say or someone where to go. Could personality lend to being overly talkative? I don’t think so. In my encounters, I find that some people just aren’t conscious that they do talk a lot or don’t have an understanding that communication also involves listening. It’s impossible to get to know someone if you’re always talking and talking too much. You could talk the attraction out of you and romantic interest out of someone, if you never for a second took time to engage them.

How amazing it would be to get into the heart, spirit and mind of someone else by asking questions? I enjoy engaging someone I’m interested in. I ask questions. Lots of questions. To know a person is to ask questions. To know a person is to listen. To love a person to know their heart and who they are in God. You wouldn’t know these things if the attention is always on you and your overly talkative. Invite someone on your stage and give them a mic, then ask, tell me what you’re passionate about or what stirs you or how do you feel about x, y, z. And I dear you to let them finish without cutting them of and drawing the attention back to you.

Having absolutely nothing to say isn’t so appealing either. What’s a conversation without the other person ever knowing what’s going on inside your head. Saying nothing could give the impression that you aren’t confident, you are uncomfortable or awkward. These are the last things you want running through another person head while they’re giving you the blank stare. Say you may not be interested or well versed in a particular subject, I would still find an angle to interject. Ask questions and find ways to link what’s being said to what you know. What’s going upstairs in your head maybe the last words you have actually never said if you’re too quiet or not talkative.

I developed a kind of intuition over the years that I know when to speak or listen. I just know when I’m talking to a listener or a talker who doesn’t have an ear to listen because they’re so fired up to get back on the horse and ride again. I can also tell if a person is or isn’t attentive. I can feel it and see it. I’m not a person who’s overly talkative, but there are moments when God is like, Melvin, stop talking. It’s time to listen. Or, speak, you have done enough listening. I instinctively pickup on visual and audio cues of when to speak or listen. Spiritually speaking, I credit my instincts to the Holy Spirit. He’s given me to the ability to discern when to speak or listen. Communication is about balance. Many people have the idea that communication is only speaking. Communication is listening too.

You may find the last point I want to highlight funny. It’s a term I came up with…not sure if anyone has used it. If so, oh well. A ninja is someone who cuts you off before you could answer their question or elaborate on whatever it is that you’re talking about. Let’s take a look at this dialogue.

At the movies, the person you’re on a date with is talking throughout the entire movie. The lights come and they “So how was the movie?”

You lips move to respond. “I like…”

“I really like when the guy jumped off the roof and kicked him in the face. What did you like about the end?

Your lips move to respond.

“The ending should’ve been better,” your date responds.

You get the idea? The ninja slices and dices and gives you two back hands before you get a word out. Frustrating huh? Let’s a deeper look to how toxic this can be.

The root of being cut by a ninja is self-centeredness. Since self-centeredness is the root, the person is overly talkative. Hence, being too talkative is the result of being cut off in a conversation before you could get a word out. This can be irritating and makes you not want to bother talking. Draining huh?

Of course they are exceptions when it comes to likeminded and behavioral-like people. I will add tolerance too. Too people who are self-centered may work. I’m not sure how, for the reason they’ll be fighting for the spotlight. But hey, anything is possible. Two talkative people in a relationship could work as well. I’m sure you know some. You may have the tolerance to date a ninja. Perhaps you don’t mind slicing and dicing them back to get a word or approaching the conversation like double-dutch. It’s about finding your match. Excellent communication sustains long and healthy relationships.

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