Successful Relationships Reading Corner

Successful Relationships Reading Corner

This week, we wrote about how to avoid relationship conflicts by using the word “stop”, and here are a number of writers offering their variants on the idea.

The Power of Pause: How Taking a Break Can Transform Relationship Conflicts “The power of the pause is simple: it’s a strategy that harnesses the strength of stepping back and taking a breather in the midst of heated moments. Breathing is simple, remembering to breathe is not easy. And the more escalated and indignant people become, the more they dig in their heels. The pace of the fight is accelerated, and basically the whole thing is out of control. There are very few people who find this to be easy or natural, but the good news is that anyone can develop this skill with practice and intention.”

How Mindfulness Can Help Couples Cool Down “One of my favorite interventions, which encourages attentional mindfulness, is simply to ask, “What are you noticing now?” I find that there can be tremendous benefits simply by shifting my clients’ attention to their own bodily sensations—clenched jaw or fists, tightness in their throat or chest, churning in the stomach—and by labeling their feelings as they arise and escalate: Anger, sadness, fear, and shame are the most common ones. Noting their patterns of thoughts and behaviors helps see them for what they are: habitual and automatic, well-grooved into the brain’s neural circuitry. And like any habit, these patterns don’t need to own or define us; they’re something we can change.”

A Powerful Tool to Stay Grounded in Conflict “…a simple mindfulness practice traditionally associated with Buddhism, shamatha, meaning calm presence. This practice is centred around concentration on your breathing as it is. If you are breathing, you are already halfway there to starting this practice! The simplicity of this practice allows it to be used anywhere you are, and as we become more familiar with it, it will become a tool used effortlessly to ground ourselves in the present.”

Tell your friends!