There is no doubt that having a strong and healthy relationship is one of the most important aspects of our lives. This comes from a relationship that has a solid foundation, that is built on trust, and a deep understanding of each other.
But, what if you’re starting a new relationship? Or what if you’ve been together for a long time but have drifted apart? Or what if you simply want to continue to improve and work on your relationship?
How do you understand your partner better, in order to strengthen and build that solid foundation?
What Does It Mean To Understand Your Partner?
First of all, we have to know what it means to actually understand our partners.
Understanding your partner means knowing who they are, what their values are, what is important to them and what is meaningful in their lives. It’s about understanding their body language and their mood without having to say anything, and knowing what will cheer them up (and when they need it).
Ultimately, it means knowing someone better than anyone else, and sometimes better than they know themselves. And most importantly, loving and supporting them along the way.
When you take the time to truly understand your partner, you create a strong foundation of trust and respect.
This allows you to weather the storms of life together and build a lasting relationship. So take the time to get to know your partner on a deeper level. It will be worth it in the long run.
Why It Is Important To Understand Your Partner
No two people are alike, and this is especially true when it comes to relationships. Every couple has their own unique way of communication, conflict resolution, and showing affection.
Understanding your partner’s individual needs and how they differ from your own is essential for a healthy and happy relationship.
It can be easy to take our partner for granted and assume that they think and feel the same way we do.
However, this is often not the case.
By taking the time to truly understand our partner, we can avoid misunderstandings, build a stronger bond, and create a more loving relationship.
If you’re looking to improve your relationship, here are a few tips on how to understand your partner better.
1 – Always Continue To Get To Know Them Better
If you want to maintain a strong, healthy relationship with your partner, it’s important to never stop learning about them.
Just as you change and grow over time, so does your partner.
By continuing to get to know them on a deeper level, you can keep your relationship fresh and exciting.
Our opinions change, our values change, our outlook on life changes, and talking to each other and continuing to learn more about each other keeps your relationship strong.
This also allows you to be there for them during the tough times, as you’ll have a better understanding of what they’re going through.
2 – Find Out Their Love Language
One of the most powerful tools you can use to help you understand your partner better is their Love Language.
This involves identifying the way that they show and receive love, whether through words, physical touch, acts of service, gifts, or quality time.
Once you understand your partner’s love language, you can then use it to communicate with them in a way that resonates.
This is essential to understanding your partner better because they may be showing love to you in their love language (for example, washing your car for you as a form of acts of service), but you’re not understanding that to be an act of love because your love language is quality time.
It’s literally like you’re speaking two different languages.
Knowing each other’s love language can help you to be able to express to each other love in a way you both understand, while also being able to meet your partner’s needs without having to be able to tap into their mind and read your partner’s thoughts.
3 – Have Uncomfortable Conversations
Communication is key in any relationship. It can be difficult to open up and share your thoughts and feelings with your partner, but it is essential for understanding each other and growing closer.
One way to communicate better is to have uncomfortable conversations.
Discussing sensitive topics can be daunting, but it can also help you to understand each other’s perspectives and build trust.
If you’re not sure where to start, try asking your partner about their family, their hopes and dreams, or a time when they felt hurt or disappointed.
You may not always agree, but the important thing is that you are sharing your thoughts and listening to each other.
Listening to your partner’s feelings, especially about negative situations, can help you understand more about their life experiences, and understand how you can be a supportive partner to them.
This can also help when relationship issues and challenging conversations arise, because you’ll already have experience in talking them through in a supportive and understanding way.
If you do find that you need a little help with these conversations, going to couples therapy can be a helpful tool in learning the best way to work through a hard time. Relationship counselling is often seen as a last resort, but when used to learn how to establish effective communication, and remove bad habits from our relationships, it can be such a useful tool in building a strong relationship.
4 – Be A Good Listener
It can be difficult to really know what another person is feeling, thinking, or intending. Miscommunications are bound to happen in any relationship, and being able to identify this can help you to understand your partner better.
One way that you can help to reduce the chances of miscommunication is by being a good listener.
This means being present and attuned to what your partner is saying, both verbally and non-verbally. It also means resisting the urge to interrupt or offer solutions.
Instead, simply allow your partner the space to express themselves.
If you’re not sure you understand, don’t be afraid to ask clarifying questions.
The goal is to foster open and honest communication between you and your partner.
Good communication is a two way street and listening to your partner’s point and your partner’s perspective, even if you don’t agree with it, can help your partner feel heard, which can, in turn, create a deeper emotional connection.
When you make the effort to truly listen, it helps to establish a healthy communication style, which can make a world of difference in your relationship.
5 – Pay Attention To Nonverbal Cues
If you want to understand your partner better, it is important to pay attention to both what they say and how they say it.
While verbal communication is undoubtedly important, nonverbal cues can often provide valuable insight into someone’s true feelings.
For example, a partner who avoids eye contact or seems tense might be feeling insecure, while someone who frequently touches you or leans in close might be feeling particularly affectionate.
By taking the time to notice and interpret these nonverbal cues, you can gain a deeper understanding of your partner’s inner thoughts and emotions.
In turn, this can help you to build a stronger and more supportive relationship.
Oftentimes, when you get to the stage where you really understand your partner, you can add a whole level of communication and understanding without having to even say any words.
6 – Try To See Things From Your Partner’s Perspective
One of the best things you can do for your relationship is to try and see things from your partner’s perspective.
It can be easy to get wrapped up in your own thoughts and experiences, but it’s important to remember that your partner has their own unique perspective.
If you can take the time to understand where they’re coming from, it will go a long way toward strengthening your relationship.
There are a few key things to keep in mind when trying to see things from your partner’s perspective.
First, remember that everyone experiences the world differently. What may seem obvious to you may not be clear to them.
Second, try to be open-minded and considerate of their point of view. Even if you don’t agree with them, hearing them out shows that you respect them and their opinion.
Lastly, don’t be afraid to ask questions. If you’re confused about something, chances are they would be happy to explain it to you.
By taking the time to see things from your partner’s perspective, you can build a stronger, more understanding relationship.
7 – Lead By Example
If you want your partner to open up more to you so you can understand them better, lead by example and open up more about yourself.
This means being open and honest about who you are, as well as sharing your thoughts and feelings with each other.
It also means actively listening to what your partner has to say, without interrupting or trying to sway their perspective.
By showing that you truly care about the person you are with and what they have to say, you can create a foundation of trust and understanding that will support your relationship for years to come.
Allow them to share in their own time and in their own way, while being supportive and understanding that opening yourself up to someone can be difficult.
8 – Understand Yourself Better
One of the most important things you can do to build a strong and healthy relationship is to understand yourself first.
When you know your own strengths, weaknesses, needs and triggers, it becomes much easier to manage conflict in a relationship. It also allows you to be more compassionate towards your partner, which is an essential ingredient for a lasting bond.
It’s so important to pay attention to your own feelings, establish your own perspectives, and be able to communicate your own needs. You are your own individual person, after all.
When you take the time to get to know yourself better, you are also more likely to make wise choices in a relationship – choices that will help you weather the challenges that inevitably arise.
Getting an accurate picture of who we truly are at our core can be key to identifying and healing areas of imbalance in our lives that could otherwise hold us back from achieving happiness and fulfillment.
So if you want to build a stronger relationship, start by getting to know yourself better. It’s one of the best investments you can make.
9 – Make Time For Conversation
We often spend time talking to our partners, but we don’t spend nearly as much time conversing with them.
Rather than just sharing information about what has happened during our day or what activities are coming up for the kids, making time for conversations, with active listening and back and forth dialogue, can make a big difference in our relationships.
While you may feel like life is too busy to sit down and have a chat, just remember, not every conversation has to be deep and meaningful.
Use conversation starters as a guide and challenge yourselves to ask each other a question each day. Ask open-ended questions, play on your sense of humor, give each other undivided attention, and make time to have conversations on a regular basis.
You can text back and forth a conversation, voice message, sit with each other over coffee your morning, or chat in bed before you fall asleep.
Making a habit of conversation, and asking questions you wouldn’t normally ask, can help you to understand each other better, and help you to continue to get to know each other more.
10 – Put Each Other First
One of the most important things you can do for your relationship is to put each other first.
This means making time for each other, doing things together that you both enjoy, and being there for each other when the going gets tough.
It also means being honest with each other and communicating openly about your needs and wants. When you make your relationship a priority, it can help build trust and understanding that will shape the foundation of your bond.
Many people may challenge this and say that we should put our kids first or we should put ourselves first, but putting each other first is one of my favorite things about marriage and a partnership. Keeping in mind, there are some specifics that need to be met in order for this to work.
11 – Celebrate Your Individuality
One of the best things you can do for your relationship is to celebrate your individualities.
It’s so important to remember that you and your partner are two separate people with different backgrounds, interests, and opinions.
Just because you’re in a romantic relationship doesn’t mean that you have to agree on everything – in fact, healthy relationships require a certain amount of disagreement.
What’s important is that you respect each other’s differences and learn to compromise when necessary.
When you’re able to celebrate your individualities, it not only makes for a more balanced relationship, but it also helps to create a deeper level of trust and understanding.
So next time you find yourself getting frustrated with your partner, take a step back and remember the things that make them unique – it could be just the thing you need to help rebuild your connection.
No relationship is perfect, but by working on these 11 things, you can start to build a stronger, more fulfilling bond with your partner and help you to understand your partner better.
It takes effort and commitment, but it’s so worth it when you’re able to look at your relationship and see how much it has grown.
If you’re feeling stuck or like you’re not sure where to start, why not try one of these tips each week and see how it goes?
Remember, even small changes can make a big difference.