Do you want to know how to transform your relationship without talking about it? Then let me introduce you to Dr. Stan Tatkin, the third relationship scientist whose book, Love and War in Intimate Relationships, rocked my world and revolutionized my work with couples.
Tatkin uncovered the controlling ways our bodies signal and activate connection and passion, or trigger an argument, regardless of the actual words we use to communicate. I highly recommend his recent book, We Do. It is a lively read and an excellent summary of his work. Here are three of his key recommendations that will give your relationship an extreme makeover:
1.) Own your face and tone of voice.
Often how we say it is far more powerful than what we say. Particularly when we feel frustrated, nothing helps to resolve conflict more positively and constructively than keeping our tone of voice positive and our facial expressions friendly. In fact, having reviewed more than fifty hours of marital therapy sessions, I can tell you that a fight is far more likely to start from a bad look or a sharp tone of voice than from a hurtful choice of words. We should also only have important discussions face to face. This allows us to receive soothing from each other’s facial expressions while minimizing the frequent negative misinterpretations that are common when talking by phone, or, God forbid, by texting.
2.) Protect your relationship at all costs.
The primary foundation of any sensational relationship is safety. Relationships thrive when we know that our partner always has our back, whether we are with them or not. So, instead of venting anger at our partner (which creates a psychobiological threat response and kills safety), we can learn to vulnerably share our pain (i.e., “I felt hurt when you didn’t call ”…) and then make an assertive request (i.e. “It would be healing for me if you would own it and talk with me about what was going on.”)
3.) Use attraction instead of fear, threat, guilt or shame, to get what you want
Are you ready to upgrade your relationship without having to talk about it? Why not start today and keep your facial expressions friendly and tone of voice positive, protect your relationship at all costs, and use only positive strategies to attract your partner to you!