If I was pushed to give what I believe is one of the most important pieces of advice about relationships conflict it is this… ACCEPTANCE FIRST, CHANGE SECOND
Fundamentally accepting your partner for who they are, their beliefs, lived experiences, personality and yes, even their flaws, is critical in conflict and for relationship success. Interestingly, the more couples try to change each other, the more likely they are to resist and become more embedded in their positions. Here in lies the relationship paradox—the more I feel fundamentally accepted and validated for who I am in my relationship, the greater the possibility of change occurring. However, if I feel misunderstood, not listened to or validated, the less likely change will occur. So here it is- listen, show understanding, validate and give empathy to your partner first and problem solve second is the key to successful conflict management and connection.
Our motto is this, “When you are in pain, in distress, experiencing negative emotion, my world stops, and I turn towards you and listen and understand with gentleness and compassion.”
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