Keys to Solve Relationship Conflicts
When you share your life with someone, sooner or later, you’ll fight, and this is completely normal. Different points of view, misunderstandings, the friction of daily routines, stress from everyday problems… all this means that at any given time, discrepancies can lead to fights. Therefore, you need to have the right tools to solve relationship conflicts.
The first thing you should keep in mind is that, as a general rule, we usually blow up at the people we love the most. This means that sometimes, your partner pays for the fight you and your boss had in the morning, the rush hour traffic, or the rough day with the kids.
After all this, the first thing you should do to solve relationship conflicts is to stop and think about what really makes you so angry. Don’t overreact, and think before you speak.
Keys to solve relationship conflicts
Wait… there’s no rush
It’s not always a good idea to talk about things in the moment. In fact, it’s even worse when it comes to conflicts in your life.
In those moments when you’re angry, it’s impossible to see the situation from your partner’s perspective. This doesn’t mean you should ignore it, but rather take some time to relax, then talk when you’re calm.
Have you heard about this? It’s nothing more than learning to listen. It seems easy, right? Well, it isn’t. It turns out that when you listen to someone, most of the time you’re probably thinking about what to say and not paying attention to what the other person is actually saying.
Active listening invites you to focus all of your attention on the person who is speaking, without judging and without expecting anything. It’s something you have to practice every day until you can apply it. Also, it’s especially valuable when talking to your children.
Respect comes first
Whatever happens, always avoid attacking or disrespecting your partner, both physically (especially) and verbally. It’s easy for more temperamental people to explode, and they could end up regretting saying things that they didn’t mean.
However, the truth is, the damage is already done. Then, it starts a pattern. Every time there’s a conflict, it becomes a habit to react this way.
Finish what you start
If you have a problem, don’t drop it in the middle of the discussion. This makes the other person feel like you don’t care, which affects their self-esteem. On the contrary, remind your partner that you want to reach an agreement, and that the relationship really matters to you.
We all make mistakes
Be humble, because even if you think you didn’t do anything wrong, you could have hurt your partner’s feelings by accident. Once again, listen to what he says and be patient.
When we argue with someone, whether or not it’s your partner, we tend to say phrases like, “You always…” or “You never…” Obviously, this isn’t true. Therefore, it’s better to focus on the problem without associating it with other moments or previous fights.
Speak from your perspective
Another important key to help solve relationship conflicts is to talk about what you’re feeling. Don’t just blame your partner. On the other hand, talk to your partner using “I” phrases. The other person will always be more receptive to listening about how you feel, not what you think he or she is supposed to do.
“When this happens, I feel this way…” is a great phrase to use to explain yourself without judging your partner. In addition, you’re speaking about your feelings and about your needs. That way, your partner can better understand how certain actions make you feel.
Don’t ask for what you can’t give
Lots of people ask too much of their partner without stopping to think about what they’re giving. If you demand something, you have to be willing to give the same. That way, you’re building an equal relationship.
It’s a very common mistake to expect too much of your partner and want them to cover all of your needs. However, no one can fill all the voids in your life, only you can do that. Sometimes this can cause frustration, and your relationship hurts because of it.
Arguments are normal, but it’s important to find healthy ways to solve relationship conflicts.
All cited sources were thoroughly reviewed by our team to ensure their quality, reliability, currency, and validity. The bibliography of this article was considered reliable and of academic or scientific accuracy.
- Moreno Martín, F. (1999). La violencia en la pareja. Revista Panamericana de Salud Pública. https://scielosp.org/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S1020-49891999000400008&lng=es&nrm=iso&tlng=es
- Perles, F., San Martín, J., Canto, J., & Moreno, P. (2011). Inteligencia emocional, celos, tendencia al abuso y estrategias de resolución de conflicto en la pareja. Escritos de Psicología / Psychological Writings. http://www.escritosdepsicologia.es/descargas/revistas/vol4num1/vol4num1_5.pdf
- Morón Gaspar, R. (2006). Terapia integral de pareja. EduPsykhé. https://doi.org/10.1109/CVPR.2013.167