* Listen: Be a good listener, pay close attention to what your partner is saying and respect your partner’s opinion even if not right. Ask clarifying questions and rephrase your partner’s statement to ensure understanding. Mark 4:24. James 1: 19-27
* Psychological expectation: Think about what you want to say, list them out, say them clearly and directly, and spell out your expectation with achievable time. Be very sure of what you are saying, do not assume nor have a mind- set.
* Conflict: Discuss in love with a friendly tone when your partner’s goal is in conflict with yours. Respect each other points of view. Be patient with yourself and your partner. Remember everybody wants to be valued and be respected. Psalm 133
* Defensiveness: Do not be defensive. Make sure your discussion is meaningful and ends well.
* Exemplary life: Take proper action to ensure your decision is carried out. Take action, talk less but listen.
* Human Imperfection: Remember nobody is perfect. Any one of you can make mistakes, disappoint or let each other’s down. See it as an opportunity to change
* Open-Mindedness: Having a flexible open mind before your conversation will help to understand your partner’s point of view and also produce more honest, productive conversations.
* Right time and place: Looking for the right time and place is also very important. It is not when any of you is angry, tired, under pressure or just coming from work. The best day is when the two of you free and happy.
* Body language: Your body language must be friendly to make you appear approachable to encourage your partner to speak openly with you. Paying attention to your partner’s nonverbal signal will also be very helpful to understand how he or she is comfortable with what you are saying. Watch for the hand gesture, eye contact, relaxed legs or open arms.
* Solve the problems together: Respect each other’s talents, doing brainstorming sessions together to collaborate on solutions. Joint decision makes the two of you feel involved and invested in solving the problems and happy.
Author Lawrence Akinwumi