Resolve Disputes With Your Partner Through Mindfulness
Practicing mindfulness can mean many different things and has many different benefits , but it is not limited to your own cultivation. You can also use mindfulness to defuse emotionally charged moments between you and your partner. This is what we mean.
Mindfulness is a powerful tool for turning tense disagreements into thoughtful discussions that will help you and your partner find a solution that works for both of you. Here’s how:
- Concentrate on your reaction with mindfulness. This includes observing how your body reacts to conversation (arms crossed, jaw clenched) and what emotions you are experiencing (shame, anger, sadness). Acknowledge how you are feeling and that these reactions are instinctive, then let them go so you can focus on what the problem is and how you can work with your partner to solve it. If you are practicing mindfulness meditation, you may have already experienced this by acknowledging the thoughts and then letting them pass by.
- Take responsibility with a “mindfulness” attitude. The goal is to understand the factors underlying the emotions you are experiencing. If you are angry, it may be because you are afraid of losing a relationship that makes you feel safe and valuable. Taking responsibility for your own contributions to a conflict can help defuse tensions.
- Pay attention to your partner. Be in the moment and listen carefully to what your partner is feeling and experiencing. This means that you don’t interrupt and think about what you are going to say next, you just absorb what they are sharing with you.
Applying mindfulness to your relationship is about acknowledging each person’s emotions, taking responsibility, and creating space between how you feel and how you interact with each other during conflict. Using mindfulness to defuse disputes with your partner won’t make a difference overnight. Mindfulness takes practice, so starting now will help you and your partner get to the point where you both feel heard.
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