3 tips for a happier relationship
Candid Conversations

3 Tips for Happier Relationships

Feb 9, 2024, 4:05 AM
Vivien Mangalindan

Vivien Mangalindan

Columnist

THE BACK STORY When it comes to relationships - simply knowing the one you love isn't enough. You have to really understand and fully grasp things to deal with the challenges of personal connection.

Let's explore three magic ingredients that make personal relationships special:

  • Knowing
  • Understanding
  • Comprehending

KNOWING: The Basics

Knowing someone is like having a gold mine of information about her. Think about a friend who's fond of ice cream. That's a simple nugget of knowledge.

But it's the little things that make your relationship unique.

  • Birthdays
  • Favorite colors
  • Their love for a certain genre of music

Knowing is similar to having a list of these personal tidbits.

In personal relationships - knowing is the foundation. Basic elements are key to making your connection special.

Example:

Leo planned a surprise birthday party for his girlfriend Jean. He knew she loved the color red and enjoyed light jazz music. So, he organized a red-themed event with light jazz music playing in the background - perfectly matching her style.

UNDERSTANDING: The Heart Of The Matter

Understanding is about grasping what someone's going through - and why they behave the way they do.

If your friends are having a rough time at work - it's not enough to just know they're stressed. It's about:

  • Really feeling for them
  • Understanding how the problem affects them
  • Being there to support them

In personal relationships - understanding means taking a closer look into why people do what they do. Imagine this:

  • Realizing your neighbor is scared of dogs because of a scary childhood incident
  • Finding out why your partner gets grumpy when he’s hungry

It's about getting to the core of the matter and connecting on a meaningful level.

Example:

Gina noticed her officemate Marie seemed down. Instead of brushing it off - Gina sat down with her to chat. She found out Marie was feeling low after a breakup. Understanding her officemate’s feelings, Gina cheered Marie up and made her feel better.

COMPREHENDING: Becoming Relationship Experts

Understanding someone authentically is like really getting to know them inside and out. Imagine a family member facing a big decision in life.

It's not just about knowing what they'll choose. It's also about understanding how their decision could shape their future - considering:

  • Their dreams
  • Their fears
  • The little things that matter to them

In relationships - comprehending resembles a whole new level of understanding. It's about:

  • Being completely in harmony with each other
  • Picking up on subtle cues in communication
  • Knowing what the other person needs before they ask

More than just knowing their love language - it's about being really good at showing love in ways that truly resonate with them.

Example:

Ted and Carol were getting ready to move to a new city for Ted's job. They knew it was important - and they spent weeks talking about it. They covered everything from practical matters to their own dreams and worries. They just wanted to make sure the move fit their plans for the future together.

TIPS AND TECHNIQUES

As we navigate personal connections - moving from knowing to understanding and comprehending raises our ability to:

  • Relate
  • Empathize
  • Build connection

In the world of relationships:

  • Knowing is the starting point.
  • Understanding is peeling the emotional layers.
  • Comprehending is like being a wiz at predicting needs and desires.

Remember: Apply Knowing, Understanding and Comprehending to enjoy happier relationships.

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