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Home >> Eliminating The Stress Of Conflict  

 Eliminating The Stress Of Conflict

The research on fighting with your mate indicates that too much or too little fighting is bad for your health. The reason being, too little fighting may mean that at least one of you is suppressing your feelings, leaving you frustrated with suppressed anger. This can lead to high blood pressure and in the long run, cardiovascular problems. Too much fighting means yelling, screaming, and even physical violence, where more problems are created than solved. The key to better health and longer life is open discussion, possibly heated at times, that not only expresses feelings honestly, but also solves the underlying problems. Anger, when uncontrolled or unexpressed, is bad for health. Here is how to deal with your anger in a healthy, productive manner.

  1. When arguing becomes too intense or hurtful to either of the party, learn how to use the 'T' sign for 'time out' to take a brief breather.
  2. Before arguing, get in touch with your own feelings, so you know what you want to express and what outcome you are hoping for.
  3. When you do express your opinion, do so by taking responsibility, both for your actions and for your desires, rather than blame your partner. Instead of "looking at this mess you got us into" try "I did X which resulted in Y. Can you help me fix it, please?"
  4. Make sure you have heard what your partner has said by paraphrasing what you heard to his/her satisfaction. "If I heard you right, you think that..... "
  5. When you want your partner to change some behavior, clearly explain what effect it would have on you. "When you do X, it makes me feel Y. Instead, would you consider Z?"
  6. Do not wait for tensions to build up so high that emotions take over, leaving no room for reason. It is much easier and less frustrating to plan on a regular 'pow-wow' to explore any difference of opinion that creates awareness of the bygone problems, which may have far-reaching effects if not solved at the earliest. Perhaps you can schedule a regular time in a week, like Friday evening or Sunday morning for discussion of ill will between the partners. Then you can clear the air about whatever bothers you before you develop resentment and anger.
  7. Above all, aim at common courtesy. Treat one another with respect. That will go a long way in minimizing flare-ups and reducing tensions.



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