Validating your partner is one of the most powerful ways to create a good relational connection with them. It lets them know that you value their feelings and experience if it it is different to your own. This in turn builds the trust between and reduces conflicts. Here are 5 ways you can introduce validation into your dialogue with your partner:
1. Listen Fully - Start by giving the other person your full attention. Remove all distractions like cell phones and let people continue talking until they finish their story and provide all the facts.
2. Summarise What You Hear - Reflect back to the person what you think they said. That way they can clarify whether you understood the message correctly.
3. Label The Emotions - Help the other person to sort out what they're feeling. If emotions have been suppressed for a long time, it can be difficult to make sense out of them.
4. Don’t Look For A Solution - Many of us feel the instinct to fix someone else’s problem if they are upset but the most helpful thing you can to is accept what they feel. Once they feel validated they will find their own solution.
5. Consider The Person's History - Different individuals react differently to the same situations depending on their personality, life history and other factors. A child who grows up in poverty may view money differently from one who had a wealthier background.
6. Show Empathy - Let the other person know that you acknowledge their feelings on the deepest level that is genuine for you. Even if they're disappointed by something that seems odd to you, you can still be sensitive to their pain.