Behavior description not only tells our partners what's on our minds, but it focuses the conversation on discrete, manageable behaviors that can be changed. Behavior description identifies as plainly and concretely as possible, a specific behavior that annoyed us.
I-statements start with "I" and then describe a distinct emotional reaction. They help us to identify our own feelings and acknowledge them; they specify feelings and convey them to our partner.
A way to communicate more clearly and accurately is to put them into XYZ statements. "When you do X in situation Y, I feel Z."
Active listening describes accurately understanding what our partners are trying to say, and then communicating our attention and comprehension to the partner. This includes paraphrasing what was said to us. Furthermore, active listening includes perception checking, where someone might ask, "You seem upset by what I said, is that right?"
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