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Restorative Practices to Resolve Conflict/Build Relationships: Katy Hutchison at TEDxWestVancouverED

Conflict Resolution Skills

2 Jun The key to good communication is managing resistance as soon as it arises. Here's how to put out an emotional fire before it gets out of control. Many couples who come into my clinic will tell me that one of their goals is to find strategies to resolve conflict within their relationship. . If you want to prevent a fight from beginning, which is a good idea some of the time, like when you are getting ready to leave for work or you are really tired and need some sleep, then . Couples who learn to solve problems constructively together cut their risk for stress-related health problems including depression, cardiovascular disease, and lowered immunity. I'll be grouchy and won't do my best at work, and I won't be very interested in socializing with our neighbors or contribute much to the meetings.

As anyone who has been in a romantic relationship knows, disagreements and fights are inevitable. When two people spend a lot of time together, with their lives intertwined, they are bound to disagree from time to time. In fact, when handled properly, fighting can improve your relationship. If you never fight and never talk about your problems, you will never solve them. By dealing with conflicts constructively, you can gain a better understanding of your partner and arrive at a solution that works for both of you.

On the other hand, it is also possible for conflicts to escalate and create ill will without resolving anything. How can you improve the odds of a successful resolution to the conflicts in your relationship? Here are 10 research-backed tips:.

Best Way To Resolve Conflict In A Relationship

Sometimes people don't just come out and plainly state what is bothering them, and instead choose more indirect ways of expressing their displeasure. Other times, partners may mope and pout without really addressing an issue.

Conflict Resolution

Partners may also simply avoid discussing a problem by quickly switching topics when the issue comes up or by being evasive. Such indirect ways of expressing anger are not constructive, because they don't give the person who is the target of the behaviors a clear idea of how to respond.

A more constructive strategy is to use "I statements" and pair Funny Quotes About Dating with "behavior descriptions. For example, this man might say, "I get irritated when you claim I'm flirting with someone during an innocent conversation. However, it should be noted that these direct negative tactics can be constructive — in some situations.

Research has shown that for couples with relatively minor problems, blaming and rejecting one's partner during a conflict discussion was associated with lower relationship satisfaction over time and tended to make problems worse.

For couples with major problemsa different picture emerged: Blaming and rejecting behaviors resulted in less satisfaction immediately following the conflict discussion, but over the long termthe problems improved, and this led to increases in relationship satisfaction. Statements like "You never help out around the house," or, "You're always staring at your cell phone" are likely to make your partner defensive.

Rather than prompting a discussion about how your partner could be more helpful or attentive, this strategy is likely to lead your partner to start generating counterexamples of all the times they were, in fact, helpful or attentive. If you want to have a constructive discussion, you need to stick to one issue at a time. Unhappy couples are likely to drag multiple topics into one discussion, a habit renowned conflict researcher John Gottman calls "kitchen-sinking.

If it seems like your partner is sweating the small stuff, take a moment to evaluate whether there is a larger issue at hand. I agree that it is totally ok to get angry and frustrated and to allow oneself to show those feelings to others. Maintain a calm and respectful demeanor during heated conversations. If she has to compromise all the time because of his needs then that is a different story.

When you want to solve personal problems, this is probably not the strategy you take with yourself. Imagine that you wanted to think about how to incorporate more physical exercise into your daily routine. You would probably not decide that this would also be a great time to think about how to save more money for retirementorganize your closet, and figure out how to deal with an awkward situation at work.

You would try to solve these problems one at a time.

Conflict Resolution

This seems obvious, but in the heat of the moment, a fight about one topic can turn into a complaining session, with both partners trading gripes. The more complaints you raise, the less likely it is that any will actually get fully discussed and resolved.

It can be very frustrating to feel like your partner is not paying attention to you. When you interrupt your partner or assume that you know what they're thinking, you're not giving them a chance to express themselves. You can show your partner that you're paying attention by using active listening techniques.

This can prevent misunderstandings before they start. You can also perception-check, by making sure that you're interpreting your partner's reactions correctly.

For example, "You seem irritated by that comment — Am I right? When you're criticized, it's hard not to get defensive.

But defensiveness doesn't solve problems.

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Imagine a couple arguing because the wife wants her husband to do more chores around the house. When she suggests that he do a quick clean-up after he gets ready to leave in the morning, he says, "Yes, that would help, but I really don't have time in the morning.

Another destructive, defensive behavior is "cross-complaining," when you respond to your partner's complaint with one of your own. In addition to listening to your partner, you need to take their perspective and try to understand where they're coming from.

Those who can take their partner's perspective are less likely to Best Way To Resolve Conflict In A Relationship angry during a conflict discussion. Other research has shown that taking a more objective perspective can also be helpful. In one study, researchers staged a simple marital quality intervention, asking participants to write about a specific disagreement they had with their partners from the perspective of a neutral third party who wanted the best for both members of the couple.

Of all of the negative things you can do and say during a conflict, the worst may be contempt. This can involve sarcasm and name-calling.

Best Way To Resolve Conflict In A Relationship

It can also include nonverbal behavior like rolling your eyes or smirking. Such behavior is extremely disrespectful, and implies that you're disgusted with your partner.

Imagine that one partner says, "I wish you took me out more," and the other responds, "Oh yes, the most important thing is to see and be seen and overpay for tiny portions of food at some rip-off restaurant. Could you be more superficial? I've been busting my butt all day, and you just get home and sprawl out on the couch, staring at your smartphone like a teenager.

It can be hard not to respond to a partner's bad behavior with even more bad behavior. But indulging that urge will only make the conflict worse. When couples engage in what Gottman and his colleagues calls "negative affect reciprocity," they trade more and more heated insults and contemptuous remarks. In his research, Gottman found that the magic number is a 5 to 1 ratio: If you see yourself falling into negative patterns and find that either you or your partner are not following the tips above, consider taking a time out from your argument.

Even a short break for a few deep breaths can be enough to calm hot tempers. What the research on conflict shows is that both perspective taking and controlling your anger are key to managing conflicts well. Airing your grievances can be productive for your relationship, but conflicts must be skillfully managed or you run the risk of making them worse. Regulating partners in intimate relationships: The costs and benefits of different communication strategies. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 96 The relationship between marital processes and marital outcomes.

Prevention of marital disorders. When "negative" behaviors are positive: A contextual analysis of the long-term effects of problem-solving behaviors on changes in relationship satisfaction. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 98 A good rule for marriage? Personal Relationships, 7 Fighting for your marriage: Positive steps for preventing divorce and preserving a lasting love.

Partner perspective taking and reactions to accommodative dilemmas. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 24— A brief intervention to promote conflict reappraisal preserves marital quality over time. Psychological Science, 24— Influence of age and gender on affect, physiology, and their interrelations: A study of long-term marriages. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 67 1 Marital processes predictive of later dissolution: Behavior, physiology, and health.

Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 63 2 For example, if a visitor submits a chat request and also you're unable to reply in 60 seconds, you can automatically reply and point out you'll help momentarily, or ask the consumer to depart their contact data to observe-up as soon as you are out there.

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References 1 Canary, D. Post Comment Your name. E-mail The content of this field is kept private and will not be shown publicly. Notify me Best Way To Resolve Conflict In A Relationship new comments are posted. Replies to my comment. Webpage at Albright College.

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Influence of age and gender on affect, physiology, and their interrelations: I have some definite struggles in my relationship with my girlfriend and as much as I want to put the blame on her, I know that I also have my role to play. This will make it hard to communicate with others and establish what's really troubling you. Emotional awareness is the key to understanding yourself and others. One would think that birth to a beautiful baby would bring on a more fruitful relationship.

Research shows when Facebook use can be harmful or beneficial. The answer depends on two separate facets of narcissism. Research suggests three reasons why power can contribute to sexual harassment. Are You a Target of Blame for a Narcissist?