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Rules for Resolving Conflicts – # 3 of 14 -Take Time to Cool Off

Before the argument or discussion becomes too heated (and you can usually feel the emotional temperature and sometimes your voice rising), take time to cool off. Say something like, “This isn’t a good time for me. I need to give it some more thought. Let’s come back to it later this evening (or this weekend). During the time out, reflect, take a walk, work out or any kind of physical activity, write down some of your thoughts/feelings/ideas and what you understand your partner’s thoughts/feelings/ideas are. Then, come back together to talk about it again. But don’t ever drop the issue completely. It’s very important to come back to the talking table again and again if necessary to create a growing history of understanding, both for your partner’s position and your own. Understanding leads to greater resolution and compromise.

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