Perhaps the biggest tip for communicating with your boyfriend is to acknowledge that people, especially men and women, do not always express themselves in the same way. Once you understands this, you can use certain techniques to improve the way you communicate: keep conversations simple and short, alert your boyfriend when you need to vent, use body language well and incorporate “I” statements into conversations. Other tips include giving your boyfriend plenty of time to answer, trying to see through his eyes and using his unique traits and interests to make points clearer. Complimenting him also can improve the communication situation, because it can make him feel more needed and capable, prompting him to talk openly.
Acknowledge Communication Differences
Men and woman often have different ways of expressing themselves. Women tend to want to explore a range of different feelings and opinions. They usually see communication as an effective way of preventing issues and planning what to do next. By contrast, discussing many opinions and feelings can be difficult for men, who typically prefer to keep things simple. They sometimes do not see communicating as necessary unless there is already the need to take action or fix a problem.
Keep It Short and Simple
Due to the way that most men communicate, it’s typically helpful to keep conversations short and rational, addressing just one or two feelings or ideas at a time. This requires you to narrow down exactly what you want to say before a discussion happens, but it usually keeps a guy’s attention.
Give a Heads Up Before Venting
Most men are good problem solvers because of the way their brains are “wired.” This can get his partner out of a fix, but it also can make a boyfriend respond to venting the wrong way. He might think that you are giving him an issue to resolve, when really you just wants to get feelings off of your chest. To put a boyfriend more at ease, it’s a good idea to start the conversation with an honest disclaimer, such as “I don’t expect anybody to have a solution, but just talking about it will make me feel better.”
Speak With the Body
Communicating well in a romantic or other relationship requires that you pay close attention to your body language. Facial and other body gestures can pass on a huge amount of meaning during a conversation, so one way to manipulate a conversation well or avoid conflict with a boyfriend is to control your movements. If you sit with your arms crossed, for example, this conveys an unwillingness to listen or hear the other person out. By contrast, leaning forward and smiling can show an interest in what your boyfriend is saying.
Use “I” Language
Even though body language can speak louder than the actual words a person says, your boyfriend still is going to listen to your actual speech. Psychologists long have recommended using “I” statements such as “I think” or “I feel that...” while communicating, because such statements generally do not put the listener on the defensive. Avoiding “you” statements therefore might improve the effectiveness of your talks.
Give Time for Response
There is a huge difference between monologue and dialogue. In monologue, just one person talks, meaning two-way communication doesn’t happen. Getting your boyfriend to open up in a meaningful way, therefore, means that you can’t do all the talking. Give your boyfriend time to react to what you’ve said. This can be challenging, because even though some people like to take time to formulate a concise, simple and clear answer, others react emotionally to the brief periods of silence and sometimes feel the need to fill them with more talking.
See from His Point of View
One trick that sometimes boosts communication in a relationship is for one partner to put himself or herself in the other's shoes. If the guy has been spending a lot of extra time with his friends, for example, you might try to think about what those friends provide in terms of fun, relaxation and self-expression. You then can couple your understanding with “I” statements, such as “I know spending time with your friends lets you get rid of stress, but I feel like...”
Take Advantage of the Unique
Even though men display some general characteristics that are pretty similar, each man, just like each woman, is highly individual. Your boyfriend has his own dreams, philosophies, experiences, fears and preferences. Incorporating these things into the communication approach can make him more responsive. If your boyfriend is into video games, for instance, your might try using an analogy using a specific game to describe a situation, problem or feeling.
Many men are naturally competitive to some degree, so complimenting your boyfriend can boost his ego, making him feel comfortable and needed. That can make him more willing to talk openly and really listen attentively.