7 Steps To Calm Discussions On Important Matters
You are a teacher. You have a unique perspective, a voice that can make your relationship incredible, and your spouse needs to hear it, just like you need to hear theirs. Sometimes it means stepping into a space that isn’t comfortable, which takes courage.
Couples need to stick together now more than ever, and the following steps can help.
As long as we’re breathing we can make a difference
If I’ve learned anything from living on this planet its that if we allow our minds to be overcome by emotions we’ll give up. We can’t let that happen. As long as we’re breathing we can make a difference.
Even if all you do is start with the first step, it’ll make a significant difference in your life AND someone else’s life. If I can turn atmospheres of total hostility in to one of peace – anyone can.
How we react in any conversation makes all the difference. These 7 tips are game changers because we are each others teachers, therefore, we’re responsible whenever anyone is near us, listening to us or speaking with us.
I’d love to say I’m perfect at this but I’m not. I came from a background of unhealthy relationship examples. While we both (my husband and I) went to church, continued our education and grew in different ways, these actions didn’t stop the terrible relationship patterns from resurfacing.
I constantly prayed and asked God to show me how to do things differently. What I was shown, however, is that it was my daily choices to allow even the slightest thought of hostility into my day that made all the difference.
So I chose to focus on a healthy mindset, and learn how to have healthier discussions. I wrote down what I would and would no longer tolerate and I shared them with my husband. Even though I knew I was turning over the tables in our entire family, much like Jesus did in the temple according to scripture, I knew it had to be done. When I changed my own thoughts – everything changed.
Little by little my level of gratitude grew. I felt myself become more grounded, level headed and less emotional. I wanted my husband to do the same kind of mindset shift of course, but that was up to him, not me. Before I knew it our home environment shifted. From time to time I struggled, but not like before. Little by little, step by step, he and I worked together. Sometimes I was the teacher and he the student and sometimes he was the teacher. Was it easy? Absolutely not. But it was definitely worth every single effort I put into changing me because my eyes were wide open, even when his weren’t.
We are the ones responsible for making positive change happen, not our spouse, no matter what the situation. It takes hard work to figure out your part in making a terrible environment healthy again. Most people would rather blame than work at it, no matter how great the relationship could be.
I wrote another article that might be helpful to you called, When you love someone, but you’re not compatible, you have a choice to make. It would be helpful to understand why men and women are so different. For now, here are the 7 steps I learned to communicate with my husband so my opinions mattered to him.
7 steps to calm discussions on important matters
Hopefully you can see that I’m passionate about helping you create greater communication in your marriage. Just remember they take practice.
- Be Unified! – To make your marriage stronger you must be on the same team. Anyone who thinks competitively will have struggles being unified, but that doesn’t mean it won’t work. Think collaboratively and you’ll almost always find resolve. Start your conversations with, Can we agree that……and then list out what points you know you agree on.
- Pick One! – Choose only one topic to discuss per discussion. You cannot correct everything at once. So say for instance you have a disagreement on finances. If you know you both want to save money and give money, start with those two point. If over spending is an issue, then only focus on that one issue. Don’t drag into your conversation others issues like college funds. Stay focused and come back to the second issue at a later time.
- Show Up! – You may get hurt in the process, but you won’t find resolve unless you keep showing up every day as a team player.
- Listen! – Keep your mouth closed. Listening allows for understanding and validation. Once your spouse has voiced their opinion, tell them you can see why they might have felt that way. Validation goes a long way in healthy communication.
- Stay Focused! – Remain positive with your words to keep a healthy mind while discussing. As we all know, Negative words can destroy.
- Cool Down! – If you need to stop the discussion then take action to step away and bring emotions under control. When emotions go up, intelligence goes down, so keep your mind sharp by slowing down your breathing.
- Win-Win! – Choose what options will help you win as a team.
I love teaching my students to implement and celebrate these tips. When put into action – they get results – and that gets me excited about the possibilities for YOUR marriage and your future. A few important things to always remember is that you don’t have to know ‘how’ something is going to change. Its a journey, not a destination. So don’t look for a final place to land in your relationship. Just constantly be willing.
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