Try as you might, it’s nearly impossible to avoid conflict in our relationships. Whether it’s with a friend, or a girlfriend/boyfriend or even a spouse, disagreements and arguments are a part of life. Unfortunately, sometimes a conflict can boil over into a serious fight where hurtful things are said, and in extreme cases, it becomes physical. If the relationship is worth saving, here are some things you should know about restoring it.
Surviving the Aftermath
Immediately after the fight, emotions are really high. Avoid the temptation to get in a last low-blow or jab. Often comments made in the aftermath arise from places of hurt. Take the time to give you and the other person some much-needed space. A brief period of forced separation gives both parties the opportunity to cool down and let lingering negative emotions pass. Try not to focus on the source of the argument, even if it involves an issue that still needs to be resolved. This is a good opportunity to reflect on your feelings and actions.
Failing to communicate after a fight can make things worse in the long-term. After an initial separation, it’s important that both parties find a way to talk about their conflict. This is a great time to be completely open and honest about your feelings, however, you should not be on the defensive. Be willing to listen and hear where the other person is coming from and avoid the need to be right. If you really want to restore this connection, it is important that you extend kindness and try to understand the other person’s point of view.
Serious arguments often reveal dark truths in a relationship. If you and your loved one can’t get past the issue, you may need to get outside help from a counselor or some other neutral party. A therapist or relationship expert can help you talk honestly about the source of conflict or underlying issues that were brought to light in the heat of the argument. Perhaps there are unresolved issues that don’t really have anything to do with the other party. Consider taking online anger management courses and/or getting professional help.
Conflict between two parties is often inevitable. Friends, lovers, spouses and even colleagues can get into serious arguments or altercations. While you never want to get into a fight, sometimes emotions boil over. If you ever pass the point of no return in a fight, there are steps you can take to repair the relationship.