9 Couple Exercises for Healthy Communication

Two women sitting outside and smiling at each other
All couples talk, but it’s how they talk that makes all the difference. Practicing talking? It sounds silly when you put it that way, but there are couple exercises for healthy communication, and there’s a good reason why! The way a couple communicates often determines how long their relationship is going to last. In fact, it even often shows the difference between toxic and healthy relationships. If you need some help in the communication department, here are some simple communication exercises for you to try with your partner at home!

1. Talk about the future

What goals do you and your romantic partner have? Regardless of whether you’ve found your soulmate or you’re just dating, talking about the future is important. Where do you see yourselves five years from now? This is not just a question for job interviews but for all lovebirds who want to stay on track. Are you looking in the same direction? Is there something you could achieve together? Making plans for the future and talking about your goals is going to bring you closer together. As goals evolve and change all the time, this is a great chat to have regularly.

2. Discuss the highs and lows of your days

At the end of each day, sit down together, and have a little chat about the highs and lows of your day. Take turns in sharing what went great and what didn’t. Carefully listen to your romantic partner as they talk, and don’t interrupt them. This is a great way to spend time together and improve your communication. Is there something you could say that could boost your soulmate’s self-esteem? Make sure to highlight their strengths and stay on their side. For instance, if they are feeling stressed out at work, let them know how hardworking they are.

3. Repeat what you’ve just heard

Two women sitting on a couch having a serious conversation

Doesn’t it hurt your self-esteem when your partner doesn’t listen to you? Truth be told, you probably don’t really listen to them every single time either. The best way to spend time together is to practice active listening because you’re wasting time when you’re not listening to each other. Talk about something for five full minutes and let your romantic partner repeat what they’ve just heard. Let them know if there is something they’ve forgotten, and make sure to practice until you can both repeat each other’s story correctly. Remember: Listen to understand, not just to reply!

4. Prepare for difficult conversations

Always make sure to think before you speak, especially when you need to say something that might not be comfortable for your partner. As a matter of fact, think about it ahead of time. If you tend to just say what’s on your mind at all times, you might not be dealing well with complex issues. When you need to discuss a sensitive topic with your partner, plan what you’ll say. Choose the appropriate time to say it, and be prepared for your partner’s reaction.

5. Talk about the hurtful things you say

Couple having an argument

Is there a lot of name-calling and hurtful statements during your fights? Talk about them when you’re not fighting and mention the worst ones. Say how they made you feel and discuss how you could respond to them in the future. Maybe you could come up with a safe word or agree on an appropriate reaction to hurtful statements. This is a great way to set boundaries and improve your communication!

6. Work on a healthier pursuer-distancer dynamic

Do you know about the pursuer-distancer dynamic? Well, the pursuer in the relationship often wants to resolve conflicts as soon as they occur. The distancer, on the other hand, tends to desire safety and space before seeking resolution. Of course, this doesn’t always happen, but if you can recognize you and your romantic partner in this description there’s something you can do. Decide on the amount of time you’ll wait before talking things out. Maybe your partner needs just 15 minutes to themselves before being ready to resolve the argument. Set boundaries by agreeing on safe words as well. For instance, you can say “ouch” whenever your partner says something hurtful, and they’ll need to pause when that happens. You should also learn to get straight to the point during arguments. Don’t forget to get intimate after intense discussions too. You can hug or simply sit close to one another in silence for a while.

7. Identify each other’s love language

Man kissing his boyfriend's head to show affection
Have you heard about Dr. Gary Chapman and the five love languages? He discovered that we prefer to receive and give love in different ways. Some prefer words of affirmation over actions of service. Others like receiving gifts better than quality time. Some people simply like giving and receiving love in the form of physical touch. These are the five love languages, and you should discover which one your soulmate prefers. Ask your romantic partner whether they would like a thoughtful gift, a back-rub, quality time with you, words of honest praise, or that you cook for them. Which one did they choose? How about you? Make these types of offers every once in a while, and see what your soulmate picks more often. This should give you a pretty good idea about their love language. If it’s still not clear, find one of the many online quizzes!

8. Share song lyrics

Which are the songs that really speak to your soulmate? Let them recite the lyrics to you and talk about the meaning. Take turns and even listen to the songs if you want, just make sure that you discuss their meanings too. The best thing about this exercise is that you’ll understand your partner better and every time you hear those songs they’ll remind you of them.

9. Say “I” instead of “You”

Couple having a discussion
You made me feel stupid when you told me that. You did that, and your actions hurt me. You said those hurtful things.Don’t these sentences make you feel bad even though they’re not directed to you? Now keep reading and notice the difference.I felt stupid when I heard that. I was hurt by the actions you took. I was sad when I heard those hurtful things.Doesn’t that sound much better? And the person hearing this would receive the same message! Always try to focus on how your partner’s behavior made you feel, instead of accusing them of what they did.

Use these exercises for healthy communication and you’ll strengthen your bond. Don’t use them just once because the more you practice the more your communication will improve!

Ana Vakos

Ana Vakos

Ana Vakos has been a writer from a very young age and she now specializes in dating and relationship topics. Writing brings her great joy, especially if it can help someone find new love or improve an existing relationship.

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