Things to do after an argument: Therapist shares tips
From validating each other’s emotions to strategising for the next conflict together, here’s what we can do after an argument.
Relationships come with conflict, which is extremely natural. When two people are involved emotionally, physically and mentally, they are bound to have conflict of opinions at times. Contrary to what we believe, conflicts are actually healthy. Arguments and conflicts help us in opening arenas about each other. Through conflicts we can come to know of the different perspectives of each other, different value systems, belief systems and learn about each other thoroughly. This further helps us in embracing the change that we and our partners undergo with time. However, maintaining certain decorum and hygiene while in the middle of a conflict is important to maintain a healthy relationship. Addressing this, Family and Marriage therapist Emily H Sanders wrote, “On creating understanding and fostering empathy after a conflict.” She further noted down, “this should be done post argument and after the tension has died down (not while things are still spicy.) The goal is to create safety and understanding, and this will be challenging to do while things are still extremely heated.”
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Emily shared a list of things that need to be done after an argument, in order to maintain a happy and healthy relationship:
Share: Sharing your experiences through the conflict can help you understand your own emotions, and also open up to your partner.
Validate: Through empathy and understanding, we can help validating each other’s experiences. Conflicts reflect that both of us may have been going through different circumstances. With a little empathy, we can validate each other’s experiences.
Triggers: Be mindful of sharing the triggers and the traumas you carry. Also ensure to know about the triggers of the partner. This further helps in avoiding circumstances where we end up hurting them or us.
Responsibility: A conflict is the responsibility of two people. Owning to the part where we are responsible, helps in creating more trust and value in the relationship.
Plan: Once when the heat has settled down, plan and strategise on how to approach similar situations in the future.