Opening up yourself in a relationship can be a big deal especially when you have been a secretive person all your life; talk more when you want to find out ways to get your partner to open up to you. In our previous article, why you should open up to your partner, we talked about five basic importance of opening up to your partner and those tips are for both genders actually. Towards the end, I gave a few tips to help you open up. If you haven’t read the article, you should read it HERE.
Any long-lasting relationship is an open relationship. You can quote me anywhere. Benefits like an increase in trust level and intimacy are some of the strong cords that hold any long-lasting relationship together. The more open your relationship is, the more intimate you and your partner become, the better you trust each other, the steadier your relationship, the longer you last together.
In case, you don’t fully grasp the meaning of an open relationship, this is a kind of relationship where planning, discussions are held together by partners and there is no form of secrecy between the partners. Everything is planned collectively and decisions are made together. An example of such a relationship is marriage. In marriage, the couples are expected to be naked to each other, (not only physically). Though some married people still shy away from openness to their spouse, you can check any successful marriage and confirm this fact. The couples are mostly naked (open) to each other, emotionally, financially, career-wise, and otherwise. This strengthens their communion and union.
Well, as a truth spiller, I have to also bring to your notice that is generally hard for men to open up than it is for women. You might have heard this before. Men have more trust checks to do and they are not usually the conversation kind of people. This doesn’t mean that a man cannot enjoy or open up a conversation. They can laugh, chat, gist, and talk with you, but once it gets to emotional or deeply sensitive talks, the man just wants to hit the nail on the head or totally avoid it, and runoff. It takes great effort for you to know the emotions of any man. This is why, once you have thrown the trowel in and given him your yes, you have to be ready to own his heart totally.
This is another reason why men rarely get heartbroken; they maintain a closed up position emotionally. No matter how much they love, there are inner doors they won’t open to you. Doors they believe will reveal the vulnerability of his superman personality and make him susceptible to you. You have to work to destroy that mindset and break the lock. Don’t get comfortable doing all the whining and talking all the time while your man gives you encouraging remarks. You can both have an open relationship where you sit and do a heart to heart. He tells you all that is on his mind in reciprocating your openness. Oh yes! it is absolutely possible.
However, building an open relationship isn’t something one person can do, neither is it rocket science. You first need to be open to your partner. Be an encourager by your examples. Don’t wait for promptings, nothing will go wrong if you take the right steps first and open up. Your partner will surely be surprised and more motivated to change. In my last write-up, I mentioned that you cannot change anybody. Having done this, you need to be patient and fully armed before you jump into the next stage. You need to know how to get your partner open up to you. It is not magic. There are basic steps. Below, I have made a list of them. Especially for men, society expects a man to be tough and self-secured. If you need the convos to start flowing, read on for some easy ways to make it easier for you both to talk and build a happier, healthier relationship.
1. Be a good listener:
the listening skills are very necessary condiments here. If you want someone to talk to YOU, you need to learn how to listen. Not just hear their voice or what they have to say, you need to learn how to listen to them. Pay attention to each of the words they speak, do not make any assumptions. If a particular statement is not clear to you, ask for an explanation, politely. Give them brief and sharp motivations to keep talking while the conversation is going on. You can do this by nodding your head, making encouraging sounds like ‘hmmm’, helping finish up a sentence, etc. Also, when you notice your partner is speaking out of anger, don’t say anything. When he/she is calm, ask if they need your opinion. If the reply is negative, keep silent.
2. Don’t force or beg for the conversation:
women are awesome conversation starters and we love to have the flow when we are speaking. But we fail to use the same pattern we use for chats when we want to discuss a serious matter. We just drop the plate hard on the table and expect our partner to rush at the food as they would to a gist.
You can’t force a conversation, no matter how serious it is. It will be stilted and strained.
Avoid starting a conversation with, “I want us to talk.” You will definitely scare your man, and before the next word flies out of your mouth, his defenses are up and he already has a ready answer to whatever you have to say cooking in his heart.
Instead of forcing or begging for a conversation, you could start it as a casual gist. Make sure the atmosphere is friendly and calm before you bring any discussion up. When you are ready to switch to the important subject, ensure your voice is calm and normal. Let the convos flow naturally.
3. The right character:
a good character is like an erotic perfume, it makes you more appealing and desirable, even in a room of beauties. Work on your character, you will earn the trust and unhindered love from your partner. Thence, it will be easier to encourage him to open up.
4. Ask questions:
there a number of questions you could ask a man to get him talking. One of the top questions is; How was your day?, How did the contract go?, How was work today? trust me, he is sure to give you a passive answer like, “It was fine”, “It went well”, “It was stressful but I did my best”, and many more.
It is your duty to ask deeper questions more affectionately. Let him feel the affection and care in your voice. Once he doesn’t feel it, he will tend to lock up immediately. As he begins to speak, listen attentively to what he has to say. Ask questions for clarification’s sake alone and avoid controversial questions, it will lock him up sooner than you can ever get to open him up again. Men usually talk about actions, ask questions that will expose their feelings, and reveal a part of their vulnerability.
5. Talk every time you are alone:
especially in the car. Take advantage of your alone time and start off conversations. It doesn’t have to be anything serious, you could talk about your work, your day, your family and try to get him participatory in the talk. Remember to pay attention to his reactions. The goal is not to just hear him speak but know how he reasons and thinks. Speaking in the car is more comfortable for them because they are quite distracted by the scenery of the road. The lack of an eye to eye can make the conversation more relaxed. Talking eye to eye can be intimidating for some men.
6. Approach issues from the corner:
you don’t just jump into the water and expect it to be still, there will surely be a splash. Approach your conversations from the side. Go from abstract to specific. Jumping into specific can be scary and initiate locking of doors before they start. If you want to ask him for details about his means of income, you can begin with a joke or a very light conversation about football or food.
7. Use yourself as bait to start a conversation:
this is another miracle tip. You can narrate a personal experience and ask what they will do if they were in your shoes.
8. Take their personality into consideration:
the rules we have listed here are only basic, the personality of your partner will help you introduce other rules that are necessary.
9. Talk while doing something else:
to avoid the intimidation from an eye to eye conversation, you could start conversations while working in the house. (cooking, washing, cleaning, etc)
10. Speak his love language: one way you can make him melt in your hands like an ice cream is by speaking his love language. You could endear his heart from that angle and hit your strike.
11. Be open-minded and accept anything he has to say:
shouting and arguing over something he revealed to you is an off-turner. Expect the best and the worst. Train your mind to accept shocks. Be calm and don’t bicker as many couples would. If you don’t have anything worthwhile to say, you could keep your mouth shut and process what you have said.
12. Keep practicing: keep starting up conversations, even when he is not responding well. Continue trying to start up talks and listen to what he has to say. Don’t push him or force him to talk. If he is not responding at all despite several numbers of tries, you can let him be at this point. Relationship therapists state that it is still possible to live in harmony together, you just need to be understanding.
Whew! I’ve succeeded in listing twelve amazing ways to get your partner open up to you. None of this is magic. Don’t expect quite supernatural results. Apply patience to this condiment and see what miracle happens.
ALSO, READ How to mend broken trust in a relationship