Turning Towards your partner might also include stress-relieving talks. The goal of a Stress-Reducing Conversation is to help you handle daily external stress, such as a job or personal stress, that originates from outside the partnership. Do you and your partner engage in stress-relieving discussions?
What happens when you’re anxious or unhappy about something that has nothing to do with your relationship and turn to your spouse for support? Is he or she capable of relieving your tension and providing genuine support? Or do you find yourself feeling even more alone after venting and sharing?
But isn’t it easier said than done? Sarah, a psychotherapist, explains how to break down each of these ideas and apply them as the eight golden laws of speaking under stress in the post below.
How to Have A Stress-Reducing Conversation
Pick a topic that is giving you stress and talk about it for 5 minutes.
Each of you will have 5 minutes to speak while your partner listens to you.
After 5 minutes switch roles; the exercise will take a total of 10 minutes to complete.
To begin, you listen attentively and show interest by asking your partner questions that help you better grasp their subjective experience. For instance, “how do you feel about that?” or “what concerns you the most?” You’re attempting to figure out how your partner feels.
2. Don’t provide advice to people who haven’t asked for it
Your spouse will feel rejected if you provide a solution fast. When your spouse is anxious, he or she is searching for someone to listen to them or a shoulder to weep on. This is not the time to provide advice or try to fix your partner’s difficulties. Use this opportunity to reassure your spouse that you understand and sympathize with their distress.
3. Express your understanding
By mimicking what the other person is saying, you may verbally confirm what they’re saying. That is, if someone says, “Christine said something today that really upset me,” you should respond, “What did Christine say to upset you?” Instead of using a vocal version of the sad face emoji, the goal is to replicate what they’re doing.
4. Express affection
Reach over and hold your partner’s hand, wrap your arm over his or her shoulder, and tell him or her, for example, say “I love you.”
5. Empathize with the feelings of our partner
The next stage is for you to sympathize with your companion. “I can see why you’re concerned / worried about that,” or “No wonder you’re quite angry,” or “It seems like you had a really difficult day,” are examples of empathy. You’re simply expressing your opinion on how your spouse feels.
6. Don’t fix problems for your partner
Before you propose ideas, inquire about your partner’s opinions on changing a condition or resolving an issue. Trust that your spouse will have useful thoughts and suggestions. If your spouse asks for your opinion or suggestions, you might offer to work together to address the situation. Fixing neither your partner nor your relationship will help.
7. Show real interest
Don’t allow your mind or eyes to wander away from your companion. Make sure you’re paying attention to your companion and making eye contact. Nod along and say”uh, huh” and nod. To have a better understanding, ask questions.
Let your spouse know that you understand his or her sentiments by saying something like, “Yes, that is terribly sad.” “I’d be concerned, too, honey,” or “I can see why you’d be irritated by that.”
8. Take your partner’s side
In any situation, you always take your partner’s side. The objective of a stress-reduction talk is to make your spouse feel less alone when it comes to the issues that are bothering them. When you’re worried, one of the worst feelings you can have is being alone.
Even if you agree with the criticism or answer your spouse received from another person, now is not the time to take the other person’s side. Defer problem-solving and avoid mentioning that you agree with their opponent. Rather, simply sympathize with your partner’s feelings. Concentrate on what your spouse is feeling rather than what he or she is observing (thinking).
That way, you may be honest about your personal feelings while showing your spouse support. You may be their closest friend and ally, and you can assist them to release tension by enabling them to share.