For a lot of relationships, communication is usually the bridge on which a lot of problems surface. While misunderstandings are likely to occur now and then, miscommunication shouldn’t always be the cause.

Communication issues will have you doubting your compatibility with your partner as well as their true feelings about you. For the sake of all relationships, here are eight communication tips all couples should know.

Listen actively

As you know very well, the difference between hearing and listening is noticeable when you come down to it. As a couple, your partner wants to be listened to. Don’t practice selective listening where you pick and choose the phrases or words you’re interested in. Listen emphatically. Listen to comprehend, not just to respond.

Open up to conversations

A lot of couples become defensive during conversations about specific topics. Your partner may just be seeking your perspective. Do not walk into every conversation like it’s a battlefield.

Appreciate your partner daily

It takes nothing to call, shoot a text, or leave a voicemail for your partner whenever you can. Just keep it consistent. This will remind them that you’re thinking of them despite the craziness of your day.

Words of affirmation

A lot of couples lose their relationship because it seemed their partner didn’t appreciate them. Words of affirmation like ‘I love you,’ ‘Thank you,’ ‘I don’t know what I’d do without you,’ ‘You complete me,’ and so many others give partners the emotional security they crave.

Ask questions

If you’re unsure about something in your relationship, bring it up to your partner. Both of you should talk it through amicably.

Don’t hold anything in

Healthy relationships will not require partners to suppress their emotions or how they feel about certain things. Speak directly from your heart about how you feel whenever you feel it. It’ll help you avoid grudges.

Give freely

Whether your partner needs attention, time together, or material gifts, always think about giving them what they crave. It’s not always about receiving. Make sure that they know what you need, as well.

Keep the flame burning

Do something new or spontaneous with your partner. It will solidify the relationship and improve communication skills.

We can all agree that in any relationship at all, communication is vital. With these few tips, communication is bound to improve as you grow together.