Reaction, Rage, Reenactment/Reflection, Regret, Remorse/Romanticizing, REPEAT
My husband recently told me, “You don’t need to have an epiphany or a life changing moment you just need to stop!”
Stop, the cycle that is. And I don’t mean my feminine cycle, although that isn’t helpful!
This cycle comes from disagreements/ falling outs with family members, friends, coworkers, or romantic relationships.
Reaction-Yours and theirs.
Rage-Frustration, hurt, or anger.
Going over the incident in your mind, talking to someone else about it.
Telling YOUR perception, hearing THEIR perception of what happened and having a better understanding all around.
Finding out all the facts.
Regret-Feeling like you wish you had conducted yourself better, avoided the argument, said how you felt, or protected your heart more.
Remorse/ Romanticizing-Unhappy with the result.
Imagining a better outcome.
Thinking your relationship was more than it is.
Embellishing positive OR negative characteristics about the other person or your relationship.
You continue to burn bridges, have fall outs, all/nothing relationships, lose your temper and/or make up and have another disagreement with same person.
(Not learning your lesson)
Why my husband and I are perfect for each other is we are opposites. Our character is the same, our morals, and goals are the same, but our personalities could not be more different! I bounce everything off him since I tend to be more emotionally reactive and he tends to be more rational. Recently, I had a “disagreement”, one that left me super heartbroken. Through it I really saw something in my husband, frustration.
Frustration from the other person and frustration about my reaction. I realized how much he has my back and how me not acting my best makes it hard for him to defend me. To have someone hold you on a pedestal and for you to see how you’ve let them down is not fun. You know that line from As Good as It Gets, “You make me want to be a better man.”? I get it now. For your marriage’s sake if your spouse thinks the world of you, be as good as your spouse thinks you are.
I am almost thirty and this adulting thing is really taking quite a while to sink in, but if you find yourself always in conflict I suggest reading this post.
1) Be accountable- for yourself alone. Take your emotions out and rationally look at the issue. What can you do differently? How can you walk away without regret, without an apology? (regarding your reaction, if you were wrong initially you should totally apologize, I mean DUH!)
– Understand that you can’t argue with stupidity or insanity. Some people will continuously miss the point and it is not your job to clarify for them if they don’t get it the first time.
– People will realize they are wrong in their own time, or they won’t. Not your problem!
– Let people realize they are wrong on their own.
– Rectify what you can on your part, sometimes that means leaving well enough alone and staying quiet.
2) Know yourself
– If you cannot control your emotions, make sure you are calm before engaging.
– Don’t let anyone degrade you or make you question yourself or your motives.
3) Higher ground
I mean this is the hardest, especially if you are hurt. It is so easy to go tit for tat and to respond to low blows with lower blows. But you gotta stay high. Either things will get better, and you will have said things you can’t take back (even when said out of anger). Or they won’t, but if that person is an asshole, guess what? They know they are deep down. And if they are in the wrong 100% initially any response on your end will give you some of the responsibility, let them be 100% wrong. Trust me, someone who is 100% at fault knows it and wants you get dirty with them. They will look for any reason to completely deflect from the original issue and use your weak moment as a time to capitalize. The initial issue will be completely trumped by that one negative thing you said. AND you did say it, so you just made yourself an equal partner at Crap Enterprise.
– Again, check your emotions and think about what you say before you say it. Even if that means having the discussion with yourself in your car (no one will know you are talking to yourself, HELLO, Bluetooth).
– Keep it to yourself, especially don’t tell others that know both of you. Let other’s come to their own conclusions. Plus, if the other person finds out you only give them more ammunition in their, I hate you campaign.
– If someone wants to make you the villain, let them! Your reaction really shows who you are.
4) The most important R, be Real.
Disagreements happen in any type of relationship. You don’t have to end a relationship over something small and it doesn’t have to be a huge issue to end the relationship. The smallest reason can fracture an already fragile relationship while something massive can be rectified if the relationship is important enough. Arguments can shed light on where you really stand with someone. (painfully true in my case) Though I don’t recommend causing fights to test to your relationships, I think its important to take from every situation a lesson. Be real with yourself about who the other person is. Ask yourself these question and answer honestly;
– Do you forgive faults in someone because of their title in your life?
– Do you base your relationship on what the person can do for you?
– Will you be able to get over the things said/done?
I find it funny how after an argument people can bring up so many things that have just been marinating in their head. Remember that, when you think about making amends. Don’t forget how quickly those issues were brought to light. Sometimes the fallout isn’t about one particular thing. It only opened the flood gate of pent up opinions. How many unrelated issues came up? Those are the important things to reflect on, on both ends. Maybe for you, the argument confirmed something about that person. No amount of sorrys take that away. If you make amends on the argument alone it will happen again!
5) Give yourself permission to walk away.
– At any point in a relationship if you know the issue is much deeper than any disagreement walk away.
– Stop feeling the need to explain yourself or to clarify. At some point you need to walk away and not waste your energy.
– It doesn’t need to end in a blow up, or even with an explanation.
Recently my family and I were discussing a tragedy that happened locally, a murder suicide. We kept debating why this father would do this, was it financial crisis, was the wife threatening to take away the children, etc. My dad finally said, “if we knew/ understood why this man did what he did, that would be scary.” To understand we would have to be capable of making those same choices. Since we are not, we will never understand the why.
You are not everyone’s cup of tea and every is not yours. You will not understand the whys of everyone and if you are in a relationship of different whys it will be a frustrating one. Arguments for me are always intended for reconciliation. How many arguments have resulted in such? Not many. Why? Because we don’t have the same whys. We don’t have the same character. If you are always in conflict, it’s because you aren’t properly vetting the people close to you. We assume we are all on the same playing field and that’s just not the case. Sometimes just acknowledging they are in the sand box while you are on the black top can be the most freeing thing you can do for yourself.
No conflict needed.
Self-respect in tow.
The people who love you and know you will get it, trust that!