Conflict between two people can be one of the most difficult and hurdle filled tasks to navigate. It’s hard enough to make a relationship work without adding in the extra strain that conflict can bring. But this doesn’t mean it’s impossible. Learning to resolve conflicts by using healthy strategies is important for any strong and lasting relationship. These strategies will help you both stay on the same page, no matter the scale of the disagreement.
The first step is to listen intently to your partner, in order to understand them and what they are feeling. This helps ensure that your partner feels validated and respected. Try to focus on the here and now rather than the past or the future. Discuss what’s going on in the present, so that it doesn’t become a never-ending cycle of squabbling.
It is also important to maintain your composure when engaging in conflict resolution. Yelling and name-calling are not options, since it only serves to increase any tension between the two of you. Instead, try to express yourself with caring tones and using respectful language. Emphasize “I” statements that focus on your feelings and what’s going on inside of you instead of accusing your partner of anything.
Compromise is key to any good relationship and the same goes for conflict resolution. Without compromising and meeting in the middle, both parties may end up feeling dissatisfied and unresolved. This is why it’s important to respect and consider the other person’s perspective and come up with solutions that both agree to.
Finally, once the arguing and intense emotions have subsided, it’s important to follow through. If both parties have agreed to a certain set of compromises, make sure to appropriately address and move forward with those agreements.
No relationship is always perfect and sometimes even healthy ones experience conflict. But staying aware of how you and your partner handle those disagreements makes all the difference. By using such strategies, couples can walk away from the conversation feeling heard, respected, and understood.
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