Conflict is inevitable in all relationships. No matter how perfectly matched two friends or partners are, there will always be something that sparks an argument. Learning how to keep an argument in a respectful and constructive tone takes a lot of practice – and restraint.
Think about the last time you got into an argument that quickly escalated to raised voices, exchanged accusations, and hurled insults. Typically, these kinds of escalations happen when someone says something that our emotional system registers as an attack. The strong negative emotions we experience then hijack our own thought processes and impel us to launch a defensive counterattack. Then we have a rapid, angry escalation where the goal quickly becomes to come out on top.
What would happen if, when we perceive the threat that triggers an adrenaline release, when we feel the blow of those horrible emotions, we just stood there and absorbed the blow?
If we took a moment to breathe and collect our thoughts, we could actually make this situation productive. Consider it an act of bravery. It doesn’t take bravery to run away from the argument and it doesn’t take bravery to lash out and counterattack. So, learn to fight with honor and be a social warrior.
- Emotional Health