In the movie “War Games” (Yes, dating myself), the computer famously says “the only winning move is not to play.”
Now there are obviously times in our marriage when we need to discuss things, topics that are important to both of us.
But sometimes we find ourselves using the losing strategy of trying to win, even though it’s not important.
The next time you and your partner disagree about something, ask each other (Yourself first) “How important is this to you-on a scale of 1-10?”
It’s a quick way to communicate your position on the issue.
If you’re a 2 and your partner is a 9, then you can decide to not argue, and make that wise choice. Accept their position and move on.
If you’re a 9 and your partner is a 9, then it’s important to discuss. Take a look at the urgency-does it need to be discussed now, or can it wait. See if you can listen to each other’s position, and put off a resolution for now. Seek to understand each other’s position by asking open-ended questions. Remember it’s better to understand than to be understood when it comes to a possible conflict. Try to ask questions to understand your partner’s point of view first.
Couples Counseling Mountainside
Chuck Beardsley, LCSW is a level-3 Gottman couples counselor, and is a level 3 Relational Life Counselor. Chuck utilizes Mindfulness, ACT, and other contemplative practices in his work with individuals and couples.
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