Conflict Conversation

Understanding Each Other: Part One of the State of The Union Meeting

Understanding Each Other: Part One of the State of The Union Meeting

union

How you and your partner fight directly influences how emotionally connected and passionate your relationship is.

After four decades of research on thousands of couples, Dr. Gottman noticed that the Masters of relationships fought differently than the Disasters. The Masters focused on attuning to each other by seeking to understand before problem-solving, whereas the Disasters consistently devolved into the Four Horsemen: criticism, contempt, defensiveness, and stonewalling.… Continue reading Here

Stop Trying to Fix Your Partner’s Feelings, Connect with Them Instead

Stop Trying to Fix Your Partner’s Feelings, Connect with Them Instead

feelings

One of our deepest needs as humans is to feel understood, and true understanding is not possible without empathy. As psychologist Carl Rogers put it, “When someone really hears you without passing judgment on you, without trying to take responsibility for you, without trying to mold you, it feels damn good!”

Think back to a time when you were listened to and really felt heard.… Continue reading Here

How to Listen Without Getting Defensive in Relationship Conflict

How to Listen Without Getting Defensive in Relationship Conflict

defensive

Understanding your partner requires the capacity to listen. Really listen. Couples are advised to hear each other’s complaints without feeling attacked, and as great as this sounds, it’s often unrealistic.

When something you said (or didn’t say) hurts your partner’s feelings, there’s a strong impulse to interrupt with, “That wasn’t my intention.… Continue reading Here

Understanding Must Precede Advice in Relationship Conflict

Understanding Must Precede Advice in Relationship Conflict

understanding

Mike finds his wife’s “explosion” of anger “unbearable.” When she gets angry, he tries to neutralize or fix her feelings. He often tries to problem solve before understanding why Stacey is upset. This makes Stacey feel dumb for experiencing and expressing her innate feelings.… Continue reading Here

Transforming Criticism into Wishes: A Recipe for Successful Conflict

Transforming Criticism into Wishes: A Recipe for Successful Conflict

This article was originally published on The Gottman Relationship Blog.

In the heat of an argument, it’s far easier to say what we don’t want than what we do. Stan Tatkin, the founder of the psychobiological approach to couple therapy, proposes that people are better built for war than love.… Continue reading Here

There Are Two Views to Every Conflict and Both Are Valid

There Are Two Views to Every Conflict and Both Are Valid

perspective

This article was originally published on The Gottman Relationship Blog

Heather’s voice raises as she says, “How can you not see it my way? It’s the truth and you know it. You’re just too stubborn to admit it!”

Jason responds, “That’s not what happened at all.… Continue reading Here

Help Your Partner Understand Your Side of the Conflict in 3 Steps

Help Your Partner Understand Your Side of the Conflict in 3 Steps

 

Understand

This article was originally published on The Gottman Relationship Blog.

Conflict isn’t easy: There’s hurt. There’s misunderstanding. And, at the same time, there are parts of us that are screaming to feel validated and understood. The problem for many of us is we have learned to communicate in a way that actually pushes our partners away from truly understanding us or meeting our needs.… Continue reading Here

This Pre-Conflict Warm-up Helps Couples Fight Better

This Pre-Conflict Warm-up Helps Couples Fight Better

pre-conflict

This article was originally published on The Gottman Relationship Blog

Leo Tolstoy’s book Anna Karenina begins, “Happy families are all alike; every unhappy family is unhappy in its own way.” Dr. Gottman’s four decades of research tells a different story.

Following thousands of couples (some for multiple decades), Gottman found that the couples who would eventually divorce were more alike than different.… Continue reading Here

3 Healthy Steps to Coping with Your Partners Anger

3 Healthy Steps to Coping with Your Partners Anger

anger

This article was originally published on The Gottman Relationship Blog.

Have you ever wondered why we get angry? According to psychologist Daniel Goleman, “emotions are, in essence, impulses to act, the instant plans for handling life that evolution has instilled in us.”

In his book Emotional Intelligence, Goleman tells us that anger causes blood to flow to our hands, making it easier for us to strike an enemy or hold a weapon.… Continue reading Here

Page 1 of 4123...Last »