How to Stop Arguing: Get Help!

Would you like help to stop arguing and build a happy marriage? Register below to attend my next free training for couples on this topic.

family therapist in Alabama

Do you want to stop arguing with your spouse? Does your marriage need help? Attend my next “marriage communication training where I share the secrets to a lasting marriage. Click the button below to sign up.

Joe Follette, Jr. LMFT

How to Stop Arguing: Keep Your Filter Unclogged

We all have blind spots. There may be truths about ourselves that others see, but we don’t. It is really hard sometimes to hear the truth that our spouse is trying to communicate to us. Some people are more open to frank, candid conversations than others. Honesty is a key component of happy marriages. If we can honestly share our thoughts and feelings with each other, it is safe to talk, openly communicate and come to an agreement.

We all have the potential of getting stuck in irrational thinking. More than likely, when we act like our spouse is our enemy we are thinking irrationally. These irrational thoughts form the dirty filters that keep us from agreement. Communication is important in helping us talk through these erroneous beliefs that keep us away from agreement. Our dirty filters are often passed down from the previous generation. They are formed from life’s disappointments and difficulties. They represent our attempt to make sense of our experiences, but unfortunately, we don’t always arrive at the most helpful conclusion. Often we need psychoanalysis by a trained counselor to help us clean out these filters. It is no understatement to declare how damaging some filters can be to marital relationships.

family therapist in Alabama

Sign up for a free training!

Do you want to stop arguing with your spouse? Does your marriage need help? Attend my next free training where I share the secrets to a lasting marriage. Click the button below to sign up.

Joe Follette, Jr. LMFT

How to Stop Arguing: Learn How to De-escalate

Inevitably, something is going to get somebody fired up at some time. Your spouse will say something that gets under your skin. You may not respond in a positive way. Before you know it, you are having a yelling match or something similar. While these moments are to be expected, it is important for you to to recognize the escalation and diffuse it.

During high-anxiety moments in relationships, the fight-or-flight response has been triggered. God created us to protect ourselves when in danger. The adrenaline flow provides the added strength and alertness to handle crises. Unfortunately, 99 percent of the time when this response is triggered it is a false alarm. There is no imminent danger. However, you’re on alert as if there is. This alert signal unfortunately gets triggered during disagreements, misunderstandings, and disappointments. Instead of talking through the situation, couples become defensive and offensive. Instead of solving the problem, they basically inflame the problem, making it even worse. And worst of all, the problem that arose goes unresolved. Over the course of time, this pattern of unresolving problems leads to a very unhappy marriage and even divorce.

 

Couple Having Coffee

Here are some things you can do to keep those trigger moments from getting out of hand:

  1. Take a deep breath. Release the tension and tell your mind there is no danger.
  2. Lower your voice. Speak in a whisper if you must. If they feel safe and you feel safe place your hand on their shoulder in a caring manner to let them know you don’t see them as your enemy, and you care about them.
  3. Recognize when the fight-or-flight syndrome has been triggered. You know that the fight-or-flight response has been triggered when one of you becomes silent (withdraws, ignores, changes the subject, etc.) or violent (interrupting, yelling, denigrating, hitting, etc.). Being aware will help you keep the communication environment safe. Make the adjustment sooner rather than later.
  4. Show respect for the other’s opinion by 1) not quickly disregarding it, 2) not taking the floor and sharing your opinion, and 3) repeating back in your own words and clarifying what you heard your spouse say.
  5. Take a time-out for 10 minutes or less. Agree to give one another space for a short period of time when a time-out is requested. This will allow both of you time to calm down and think through the emotions you are feeling.
  6. Ask your spouse if they are feeling safe right now. Ask what you can do to help them feel more comfortable in order continue the conversation and find a resolution.
  7. Take a gratitude break. Take a moment to share something you genuinely appreciate about your spouse. Maybe this will help you feel safe again.
  8. If your spouse if really belligerent, you may need to gently call their name repeatedly until you get their attention. Then say, “I’m not feeling very safe right now, can we take a five minute time-out so we can calmly continue this conversation and create a ‘we-win’ outcome?”
family therapist in Alabama

Sign up for a free training!

Do you want to stop arguing with your spouse? Does your marriage need help? Attend my next free training where I share the secrets to a lasting marriage. Click the button below to sign up.

Joe Follette, Jr. LMFT

How to Stop Arguing: Commit to “We-Win” Negotiation

Everybody wants what they want. Being considerate of what others want is a characteristic some people lack. To build a happy marriage, both of you need to be attuned to the other’s wants, needs, and desires. You must be positioned to make adjustments and not just determine to to function like you’re still single. That’s the commitment you made at the altar. You must enter every conflict resolved to reach a mutually satisfying choice of options the two of you propose. This agreement should be reached respectfully while avoiding communication blockers. The environment should be so safe that you can share what you’re thinking without fear. It is difficult to stay cool when you feel strongly about something your spouse may disagree with, but maintaining respect for your spouse’s position — no matter how wrong you believe them to be — is essential to keeping them open to considering your perspective. And it is the only way to achieve a “we-win” conclusion. You may reach agreement, but if either of you feels disrespected, you run the risk of a lose.

family therapist in Alabama

Sign up for a free training!

Do you want to stop arguing with your spouse? Does your marriage need help? Attend my next “How to Stop Arguing & Build a Happy Marriage” webinar where I share the secrets to a lasting marriage. Click the button below to sign up.

Joe Follette, Jr. LMFT

How to Stop Arguing: Learn to Communicate Effectively

Communication is the process of sending and receiving messages. Couples who master this process have the most enjoyable marriages. Couples who balance talking and listening well have great marriages. Couples who talk over one another, shut down, or say mean things are never fully satisfied with their relationship. Effective communication leads to a power balance that feels really good. Using the TILE method, we-win negotiation, the talking timer, the temperature test (-10 to + 10), and recognizing silence and violence will make your marriage easier to navigate.

family therapist in Alabama

Sign up for a free training!

Do you want to stop arguing with your spouse? Does your marriage need help? Attend my next “How to Stop Arguing & Build a Happy Marriage” webinar where I share the secrets to a lasting marriage. Click the button below to sign up.

Joe Follette, Jr. LMFT