Many marriages suffer because both sides go on the defensive when big issues get brought up.
Not being able to communicate effectively with your partner can lead to disastrous results. For example, how do you address a shopping or gambling addiction without making things worse?
In this blog post, we’ll share 5 tactics you can implement right away to resolve conflict without hurting your partner in the process.
1. Be direct and clear about what upsets you
Many people give clues about what upsets them. But keep in mind that your partner isn’t a mind reader, and if you end up getting angry over small things while hiding your true source of distress, you’ll only come off as unreasonable and moody. Instead, be direct about what bothers you.
2. Blame the actions, not the character
Instead of calling your partner a liar, you may point out that you feel you can’t trust them when certain things are hidden from you. This goes straight to the core of the problem without putting your partner on the defensive. Making your partner feel like they have a character flaw will only put gas on the fire.
3. Don’t generalize
People hate hearing from their partner’s statements such as “you never clean” or “you always overspend,” mostly because it’s unfair to assume that your partner is always repeating the same negative behaviors. This approach will only put your spouse on the defensive.
4. Don’t address several issues in one sitting
One of the mistakes many couples make is bringing all of the conflicts they have up in one discussion. This only makes the conversation more emotional and things harder to address.
Plus, when you address multiple issues at once, you end up blaming each other without making progress with your arguments.
5. Try to uncover the motivations of your spouse
Before starting a conversation with your spouse, try putting yourself in their shoes.
Is there something in their past that could have been the cause of your partner’s negative behavior? How can this piece of knowledge help you navigate the conflict more smoothly?
Fights and arguments can be quite stressful for both partners, especially when they never seem to come to a resolution. But it doesn’t have to be that way.
You can find out more about yourself, your partner, and how to work together as a team by contacting a professional with your concerns.