No matter what stage you are at in your divorce, there are bound to be arguments that arise. Many of these arguments are unnecessary or unwanted, both for you as well as your partner’s mental health. Whether it be in the process of, pre or post-divorce, there are simply times you want to stop an argument in its tracks. Here are five ways that may help you find success in that process.
1. Avoid Raising Your Voice
When confronted by an angry person, often our first instinct is to go on the defense, especially if things are already tense. This makes it that much more difficult to keep our voice calm when dealing with a situation. However, remind yourself that volume does not actually do anything. It doesn’t make your partner hear you more clearly and it doesn’t shut them down if anything it fuels them.
2. Step Away
Sometimes, the most powerful way to end an argument is by learning when to walk away. This doesn’t mean an abrupt or rude exit. By engaging, you open the door to any fights occurring. By telling your partner you would like to talk about an issue at a later time, you give each of you the opportunity to cool down before pursuing your points. This way, you can approach an issue knowing exactly what you want to get out of it in a clear and concise manner.
3. Be Empathetic
As humans, one of our most unique traits is the ability to be empathic. When an argument comes up, try to utilize this empathy to truly understand what your partner is upset about. Try to see why they feel whatever it is they are feeling. Even if you disagree, chances are that allowing yourself to be in their shoes will change the way you respond during the argument, stopping it from getting out of hand.
4. Know When to Apologize
It’s important to know when to apologize. If your pride is the thing that’s keeping you from resolution, taking a second to recognize this barrier can help to avoid an argument. Oftentimes, we associate apologies with an admission of guilt which makes the act of apologizing feel like giving up power. However, apologies can be an expression of sympathy and responsibility. By changing the way, you define apologies, they will be more powerful and useful.
5. Set a Length of Your Argument
It may seem nit-picky or controlling to cut your conversation off at 20 minutes but setting that limit ensures an on-topic discussion. From the get-go, set a time limit with your partner, whether it be 10, 20, or 30 minutes. Make sure it’s a length you are both comfortable with but try to keep it short. By capping your time, you eliminate any unnecessary dialogue from you or your partner and allow a solution to be reached faster.
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