Anatomy of an Argument: Step 2 - Avoid a Judgemental Attitude

We first looked into fighting with your spouse or partner effectively and focusing on your own reactions. Here is step two of the anatomy of an argument:

Do you try to be open minded and flexible when you are at odds with your partner?  Research has shown that those people who are able to remain flexible are more successful at getting their partners to treat them the way they feel they deserve to be treated.  

Most often when we find ourselves in an argument we have competing agendas.  When we find ourselves in this position, we typically end up making the other person “wrong” in one way or another.  A silly example is driving… which lane do you prefer, what speed, what route?  How many of you have been driving and get criticized one way or the other?  Odds are you aren’t doing anything wrong, it is just different from your mate.

Do your best not to jump to negative conclusions regarding your partner.  Instead, it is best to get curious about why they acted they way they did or said what they did.  Automatically assuming the worst is an invitation for your partner to become instantly defensive and angry.  If you want your mate to meet you in the middle, this is a skill you need to master.

Happy couples will get curious before they get defensive.  Next time you find yourself in grid-lock, ask yourself if the other’s actions / beliefs / opinions are really wrong, or just legitimately different than yours.  This is where constructive compromise happens so both parties feel heard and understood.  

Please call me and I will give you all the knowledge I have on fighting fair.  I help couples navigate arguments daily, let me help you, too.