|Communicate Effectively in Your
Without the Nagging
By Susie and Otto Collins
Have you ever wanted your partner to get something done and he or
she just never seems to get around to doing it? You attempt to
give gentle reminders about the task or project which only seems to
cause your partner to drag his or her heels even more.
The last thing you want to do is nag your mate
about following through on an agreement but that's what ends up
happening. Pretty soon, any civil communication about this agreement
or task disappears and you find a tension and even distance growing.
Nobody want to be a nag. And nobody wants to live with one either!
Perhaps your partner is the one who tends to pester you about
completing a project or changing a habit. While you might intend to
get the task done or you may agree with your mate that your habit is
not beneficial, it just doesn't happen.
You might be busy or it could be that a part
of you is just not ready to make the changes that yourpartner
especially desires. You don't like to cause disappointment, but you
also don't like to feel nagged.
When nagging, pestering or harassing is present in your relationship
it's almost always a sign that there are deeper issues at work that
undoubtedly are driving a wedge between the two of you.
Cynthia doesn't want to be a nag. She remembers her mother
constantly hounding her as a teenager to clean her room, finish her
homework and feed the dog, etc. That was no fun and the last thing
Cynthia wants to do is treat her boyfriend Bill in a similar manner.
But Bill is a major procrastinator. He seems to wait until the last
minute when it comes to just about everything and even then the job
doesn't always get done.
Now that they live together, Bill's procrastinating really drives
her crazy! And it's not just about getting projects done around the
house or the mortgage paid on time. From Cynthia's perspective, Bill
also falls short when it comes to their relationship. Anniversaries
and special days often go unnoticed by him and even when they plan
nights out together, he's been known to completely forget!
The only way Cynthia knows to deal with Bill's annoying
forgetfulness and procrastinating is to frequently remind him about
the agreements they've made. The trouble is, Bill doesn't appreciate
being treated like a child. The more Cynthia nags him, the more he
"forgets" things; sometimes, he admits, he does this on purpose as a
response to her nagging.
Accept your partner "as is" and cultivate trust.
It doesn't matter which side of the proverbial coin you are on. If
nagging is present in your relationship, the thought of accepting
your partner "as is" probably is an
unwelcome thought! When you accept another person-- and even
yourself-- "as is" you are not closing down the possibility of
change. Instead, you affirm that without
any changes whatsoever, you love this person and find him or her
worthwhile and valuable.
There might even be aspects to the very habits you find irritating
that you could see some value to. Again, this doesn't mean that you
are in agreement with the habit, it's
just that you know your mate is more than this habit or even a set
of annoying tendencies.
Once you begin to move toward acceptance, you can start to cultivate
trust. A lack of trust is often at the heart of nagging. This is
partly why nagging feels so offensive and oppressive to the person
being nagged. Cynthia begins to acknowledge that she truly doesn't
trust Bill to get anything done. She remembers how degrading it felt
to her when her mother nagged. She decides to work toward trusting
Bill and accepting him "as is."
You can begin cultivating trust by starting small. Pay attention to
anything at all that your mate follows through with or keeps his or
her word about. Really notice that
your partner was demonstrating trustability in that way. Allow this
sense of trust to grow and build.
Set boundaries and make requests without nagging.
When you begin to trust your mate more and more and you give up
nagging does it mean that you simply let your partner off the hook-
for anything? You can set boundaries and make requests of your mate
and do it without nagging. Be clear and assertive about what you
It is important to Cynthia that she and Bill share regular time
together re-connecting. That is why it hurts her so much when he
forgets their weekly date night. Instead of
feeling like she has to nag Bill in order for him to show up ready
for their planned date, Cynthia decides to make a clear request of
him. She lets Bill know why the date night is important to her and
asks if he is willing to commit to continue with their weekly dates.
When he agrees, she makes the request that he will come up with a
plan so that he reminds himself that a particular night is date
night. Cynthia agrees to trust Bill to follow through.
If you notice nagging in your relationship, pause and take a deeper
look at how you are feeling. Ask your partner how he or she is
feeling and really listen to the sharing. Be willing to address your
trust issues and open up to accepting yourselves and each other "as
is" while you move closer to connection.
Susie and Otto Collins are married, life partners who are
Relationship and Life Success Coaches, and authors of several books
on relationships, including "How
to Heal Your Broken Heart," "Should You Stay or Should You Go?" "No
More Jealousy" "Creating Relationship Trust" "Communication Magic"
and "Attracting Your Perfect Partner." In addition to having a great
relationship, they regularly write, speak and conduct seminars on
love, relationships and personal growth. To read more free articles
like this or to sign up for their free online relationship tips
newsletter visit http://www.collinspartners.com