Forget Everything You've Learned About Dating, This Is The Only Rule That Matters

by Jamie Kravitz

Googling advice for dating and relationships will probably never go out of style. It's not a bad tactic — after all, it's likely what led you here. Seeking advice from other people who know what you're going through might make you feel better for a little while, but at the end of the day, there's only one move guaranteed to give you the answers you want. Forget all the other dating rules for 2018, because there's only one you need to know: Open communication is everything.

Take as many Snapchat Discover astrology quizzes as you'd like but until you actually sit down and talk to your partner about whatever it is you're concerned about, you can't know how they truly feel. It sounds obvious, but the importance of communication cannot be overstated. Ask any expert: the one piece of advice that can solve pretty much every relationship issue is to just talk about it with your partner.

So have the tough conversations, the awkward discussions, and the difficult fights. No matter how emotionally draining they may be in the moment, they will ultimately strengthen your relationship. It's that simple; good communication is at the heart of every healthy relationship. And if your communication styles clash, there are ways to deal (more on that below). Because above all, it's not about what you're going through — it's about how you handle it as a couple.

You need to work as a team in order to solve conflicts in your relationship. "Whether you've been on one date, dating for one week, one month, or one year, there will always be new things to learn about each other and learn to navigate together," Lori Salkin, senior matchmaker and dating coach at tells Elite Daily. "Having open and honest communication is the only way to truly succeed in a relationship."

If you find that communication between you and your partner is difficult, consider how you tend to address points of conflict. Do you calmly approach your partner about an issue? Are you open to hearing their side, or could you be coming across as accusatory?

"Think about the message you’re actually trying to communicate before communicating it. Take ownership of what it is you want and need, and stay away from blaming the other person," Vienna Pharaon, a licensed marriage and family therapist in New York City tells Elite Daily. "When we take a moment to clear our minds and connect to what it is we want the other person to hear, we have a better chance at delivering our message in an easy to hear kind of way. These conversations require vulnerability and ask us to bravely share our fears and insecurities with one another."

According to Pharaon, couples are "the least confident in asking their partners for clarity, articulating boundaries, and feeling secure that making requests won't scare the other one off" early on the in the relationship. This time is also when it's most important to do just that. You need to communicate with your partner from the start in order to clearly establish your expectations about the relationship.

No matter how insignificant a topic might seem, if you get in the habit of chatting about the small things, discussing bigger issues won't feel like such a huge deal. So ask your partner how their day was, what they're reading, or how they feel about the latest pop culture news. When a conflict arises or you disagree about an important decision, you'll feel more confident about hashing out how you feel — and you'll come out the other side with a relationship that's stronger and healthier than ever before.

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