Resolve conflict; Some problems can be solved, other challenges are “out of our hands” and we learn to manage/cope/respond. It’s important for couples to determine which ones are which.

Sometimes telling the difference can be tricky. Examine the issue and determine if either of you have responsibility in the situation; your thoughts, feelings, words, actions or needs. If you do, this is a situation where resolution is possible. If neither of you can take responsibility in any of these ways, it is a conflict out of your control and you must develop a plan for accepting, adjusting, creating boundaries, etc. regarding the situation. //
relationship-tipsResolve conflict; Difficulties you can resolve may be approached by;

  • Soften your start-up, which simply means starting the conversation without criticism or contempt.
  • View the situation as the problem, not your partner as the problem.
  • Make and receive “repair attempts”- any action or statement that deescalates tension.
  • Soothe yourself and reassure your partner. When you feel yourself getting heated during a conversation, let your partner know that you’re overwhelmed and take a 20-minute break. (That’s how long it takes for your body to calm down.) Then you might try closing your eyes, taking slow, deep breaths, relaxing your muscles and visualizing a calm place. After you’ve calmed down, you might help soothe your partner. Ask each other what’s most comforting and do that.
  • Maintain an attitude of teamwork, do not allow the difficulty to divide you. Be self-aware and refuse to take an attitude of entitlement.
  •  Compromise. When conflicts arise, it’s important to honor your partner’s thoughts and feelings, especially when they are different than yours. Each partner draw two circles: a smaller one inside a larger one. In the smaller circle, make a list of your nonnegotiable points. In the bigger one, make a list of what you can compromise on. Share them with each other and look for common ground. Consider what you agree on, what your common goals and feelings are and how you can accomplish these goals.
  • Remember to be tolerant of each others’ faults. We are all imperfect people and we need grace from one another. Try to out-do each other in honoring one another.