4 Tips for Managing Relationship Conflict (Tip 2)

Having an argument does not mean that your relationship is in trouble. By listening and speaking in a non-defensive fashion, avoiding criticism you can help foster healthy discussion. Disagreements and differences are an inevitable part of life but by speaking non-defensively, this positive posture will benefit your relationship. The following four strategies from relationship guru John Gottman will help you break patterns of negativity and take a positive approach to solving problems:

2. “Speak non-defensively”: Listen and speak in a way that does not engender defensiveness but, instead, fosters healthy discussion. “Praise and admiration” are the best weapons to keep negative thoughts at bay. Empathize. Realize that your partners anger might be an effort to get your attention. Adopt a receptive body posture and an open facial expression. Limit yourself to a specific complaint rather than a multitude of criticisms. Try these approaches:
“Remove the blame from your comments.”
“Say how you feel.”
“Don’t criticize your partner’ personality.”
“Don’t insult, mock or use sarcasm.”
“Be direct.”
“Don’t mind-read.”

More tips at Intentional-Relationship.com

Consider the Better Marriages, Australia Conference in Sydney 7-8 September 2013 at the Newport Mirage, details on the website at: Better Marriages, Australia Conference 2013

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