I challenge you: when in conflict-approach your partner with kindness
One of the most difficult things to do when arguing with your partner is to be kind. Why is it that feelings of defensiveness, anger and blame show their ugly head faster than we can say “hunny you’re pissing me off?”
Time to get honest: Have you ever treated your partner in such a way that you would be embarrassed to tell others?
WHY Do we do this? Why are we so quick to brand our partner as the enemy?
Psychologically, it is because our brains are wired in a way that pain commands our attention far more than pleasure- this is true for emotional pain as well. When we are hurt or angry, our brain picks up on it faster and with more intensity that when we feel pleasant feelings such as joy and happiness.
Basically, its human nature to be more attuned to the negative emotional we experience and be less connected with positive ones- that’s why its so difficult to reframe and change our approach- especially during times of high emotional intensity -like an argument.
What can you do?
- Commit to kindness. It’s more than just a statement-it is an approach to life. Take time to develop this skill and remember you’re human!
- Have hope. When we approach others by giving them the benefit of the doubt, it opens us up to having more clear communication during conflict.
- Interrupt the cycle by saying/doing something out of the ordinary. Try saying “I love you” during a shouting match or reach out and interlock fingers.
Check out this video for 5 tips on how to approach conflict with kindness:
Val Spiropoulos, LCPC ~ The Centered Life