"We've said it time and time again; good fighters own their proverbial piece of the conflict pie. They know that criticism is for cowards. They are also aware that blame and shame
never lead to positive outcomes. In any fight, it's important to understand that it's not
who is wrong but
what is wrong that counts. Here are two rules we think will help.
Rule One - Apologize when you mean it
A genuine apology entails a story of your wrongdoing and regret. Saying, 'I'm sorry' is not enough. Your heart must be in it.
Here are some tips you can use when you say, "I'm sorry." They involve three R's:
- Responsibility: "I know I hurt your feelings."
- Regret: "I feel terrible that I hurt you."
- Remedy: "I won't do it again."
Finally, steer clear of excuses! When you try to explain your mistake, it sounds like self-justification.
Rule Two: Practice Turning Criticism Into Complaints
Do you ever catch yourself making snarky comments in your marriage We've all been guilty. Critical comments are fuel for a fight. Studies show that 96% of the time the way a discussion starts will predict the end.
It's important to remember that criticism and complaints are two very different remarks. Critical comments almost always begin with "you." Complaining on the other hand almost always begins with "I." Here are examples:
- Criticism: "You're so selfish, do you ever think of my needs?"
- Complaint: "I feel disappointed when I think you will help me and then you say you are too tired."
It seems like a subtle change, but to the person on the receiving end, the difference between criticism and complaints are like night and day. By owning your feelings, rather than projecting your frustrations, you are inviting a productive conversation and resolution."