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23
FEB
2013

Practical Skills for Conflict Resolution in Relationships and Marriage

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    1. Practical skills for Conflict Resolution in Relationships and Marriage. Talk with the other person so that they are involved with your ongoing inner process, rather than going away and making decisions about what you want, in isolation from them.
    2. Improve your communication by noticing any communication signals that ‘cools things down’ between you both rather than continuing to ‘heat things up’ eg. Notice your own or the other person’s de-escalation signals such as an apology, a change of tone or emotion, looking down etc.
    3. Notice and make space for a different style of communication. This helps process conflict, rather than insisting on only one dominant style.
    4. In conflict resolution in relationships, be open to picking up the other person’s accusation about you, as it can cool the conflict. Even if you don’t believe it, it’s useful to pick up 1 percent of the accusation, out of a sense of curiosity of ‘how come this person thinks/feels this about me.’ Be open to talking about it by thinking, ‘even if this is not true right now, where or when could it be true.’
    5. Be aware if either of you are not relating to each other’s feedback. Being more in touch with the changes in the relationship communication helps prevent the recycling of the ‘fight’. Ways to ‘drop the fight’ in the moment, include speaking personally and making “I” statements, rather than blaming statements, eg ‘I feel this ‘ rather than ‘you did this or you did that’. Less conflict can decrease anxiety and depression.
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  1. Try to keep some awareness of your own edges in the middle of ‘hotspots’. Slow down if things are getting too fast and do some inner work on the spot.
  2. As well as picking up ‘your own side’, also step into the other person’s shoes and understand and pick up their side as well
  3. Watch out for ‘attack and defend cycles’ and ‘pursue and withdraw’ cycles.
  4. See if you can work with the edges that arise in the conflict resolution and don’t recycle if resolution has been reached.
  5. Think of the relationship conflict as a spiritual warriorship training and a great opportunity for you to find out more about yourself.

The problem is not conflict.  Its how we react or deal with it that brings resolution and happiness or not!

Please note: For sessions with Sherry you can attend on your own or with your partner for Marriage Counselling or Relationships Therapy.

About the Author
Sherry (BSc. Sociology; MAA. Social Work, AMHSW; Masters Science Soc. Ecology; Diplomate, Process Psychology) is a faculty Director of ANZPOP.

She has offered expert psychological counselling in Australia and overseas since 1989. Sherry is currently based in both the Sydney CBD and on the Northern Beaches near Manly. She also offers national and international phone and Skype appointments.

If you would like more information or wish to reference something you have read on this website please contact Sherry.

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