Fighting with your partner is more predictable than your weather app, and if you've been with the same person long enough, you can smell a big one coming from a mile away. But even though couple spats are as common part of relationships, knowing how to manage that angst can make all the difference in the resolution. Some people are better at having fights than others, and those that know how to manage their emotions are on to something. It turns out the one secret all long term couples use to stop fighting is a skill anyone can learn, it just takes a little practice.
Whether you are arguing about if the toilet seat should be left down or up (the correct answer is down) or how your SO's actions hurt your feelings, the key is for the two of you to maintain a connection during a fight, according to Psychology Today. Staying connected during an argument means that two people have found a way to keep their anger in check and not let emotion overshadow the issue. Because at the root of stopping the fight, is the desire to find a solution — which is a step those who stay hot-headed usually don't get around to.
Loosing your cool also means loosing your connection, which jeopardizes the opportunity for conflict resolution. Blowing up, name calling, and fleeing the fight are behaviors that often cause disconnection between couples during quarrels, and results in leaving the issue on the table, unresolved. But as Prevention reported, couples who don't freak out over fights tend to be those who are more connected. So how exactly did these couples discover this secret to end the bickering? It seems to be the effort they put into making connections with their partner on an ongoing basis.
If a couple is not mindful about being connected in the good times, it's going to be super difficult to find a connection when emotions are running high. According to Psych Central, staying connected with your partner should be an ongoing piece of your relationship. Doing simple things such as checking in with each other's emotions, knowing each other's schedules, and creating meaningful rituals together can help couples to connect on an everyday basis. Employing these habits will help to build the bond between the two of you and give you a strong foundation to stand on when arguments pop up.
Although the idea of staying connected to stop a fight is wonderful, it's not something that comes naturally for everyone. It may take a good deal of trial and error before you and your partner figure out how to get there. Just like with any new skill, try taking baby steps first. Start with a few pointers suggested by Reader's Digest, such as avoiding personal criticism, giving the other person the benefit of the doubt, and showing loving acceptance. Once you have the small things perfected, you can build on those skills for more meaningful problem solving.
Don't be discouraged when you and your SO go head-to-head over an issue — it happens in every relationship. But if you want to make your twosome go the distance, work toward the secret long term couples who make fighting look easy have known for a while: stay connected and solve the problem. Each time you work out an issue, you come closer to the goal of that ideal relationship you desire.