Do you want more closeness and intimacy in your relationship? Then you need to understand your partner better for greater depth in your romantic relationship.
Why understand your partner better
How well do you know your partner? The truth is, how well you know each other will determine how satisfying, meaning and lasting your relationship will be. Understanding implies a mutual appreciation of each other and respecting one another to be their genuine selves.
When in a relationship, we want to feel heard, seen and understood. When you take efforts to better understand your partner, they feel validated, safe and secure in the relationship. This increases the emotional attraction and connection between partners leading to a more intimate and closer relationship.
When you show that you are interested in your partner and want to know about what they think and feel, they will feel loved and cared for. They will feel valued and appreciated. And they will return the favor with equal intensity.
Relationship therapist Rebecca Wong, LCSW explains that all of us have the basic need to be understood. And this can be a serious issue in any romantic relationship. She says “Feeling seen, heard and understood leads to deeper intimacy and relational growth.” But when you fail to show any interest in understanding your partner it can easily create cracks in your relationship by making your partner feel neglected, unvalued and unloved.
When you understand your partner, you are able to see things from their perspective, realize why they think and behave in a certain way and predict their reactions to specific situations. It also allows your partner to be their genuine selves around you without feeling afraid of being judged or criticized. It allows you to be more empathic and enjoy a stronger, deeper relationship.
How to better understand your partner
Your ability to understand your partner is as crucial as love, commitment and attraction. As all of us are unique and different, it becomes imperative that we put in some effort to know your partners and show them how much they mean to us.
Here are a few ways for you to start understanding your partner better.
1. Pay attention
Make sure you are fully present when you are with your partner. Pay attention to what your partner is saying without getting distracted by unnecessary things like your phone. Rebecca Wong adds “Your only role is to be another being for your partner to share their human experience with.”
Apart from their words, you also need to pay attention to their body language as it is a crucial part of communication. By being more mindful, you can create a stronger bond with your partner.
2. Invest time to know them
One of the most valuable things you can do is to take some time to understand your partner better. Spend more time with them and engage in different experiences that evoke different emotions. Observe them not as your partner, but as an individual who has complex thoughts and emotions.
Once you start knowing them as a human being, you will start understanding them as a partner. So put in some time to know about their dreams, fears, passions, goals, strengths, weaknesses and imperfections.
3. Be patient
When you take time out to know your partner better, do not expect things to progress fast. You are trying to understand a person, their thoughts and emotions. It has taken them years to become the person they are today and you can’t get a crash course in knowing your partner. Think of it this way: It is a marathon, not a race. Know that it will take time. So make sure you are patient and allow the process to progress in it’s own pace.
4. Understand yourself first
How well do you know yourself? What are your dreams and fears? What drives you? What are your life goals and why do you have them? Before you go on a mission to understand your partner, you need to understand yourself better. Wong says “It’s hard to manage all the stuff that bubbles up and gets in the way of simply listening when you have a ton of feelings and needs prickling at you.”