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  • Writer's pictureGreg Isch

Best Practices for Communication

In observing many relationships in therapy (and in my own life), I have found certain communication and relational practices to be especially effective and helpful to make relationships extraordinarily awesome:

1. Assume the best about the other.

It can be human nature to assume the other person has a malicious intent in what they did or said. And, maybe they did. But, more often than not, the person’s intent was not as bad as we may first have thought. It is far better to assume the best about the person’s actions and overall intentions. The idea is not to repeatedly just excuse or enable negative behavior and communication, (that will be addressed in a later post), but to give the person you love the benefit of the doubt. Maybe she had a bad day, maybe she didn’t sleep well, maybe they had a bad taco, there’s a thousand reasons why someone could be acting in a negative way. The more I have worked with people, the more I believe that there is a reason they are acting the way they are, all behavior is purposeful, and that deep down, most people are trying their best.

2. You are 100% responsible for your own emotions and your own reactions.

3. Use “I feel” language – (not: You made me feel…).

4. Avoid extreme language.

5. Avoid passive-aggressive communication.

6. Come from a place of total acceptance.

7. Always work for total forgiveness.

8. Listen and seek feedback.

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