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How to turn destructive arguing into positive conversation

Arguing is a normal and inevitable aspect of any relationship. Those in healthy relationships learn to turn destructive arguments into constructive conversations.‍

When you’re in the middle of a heated, purely destructive argument, it can be hard to turn the situation around, but there are steps that can be taken to improve your communication techniques and arrive at a positive conclusion.

Online couples therapy, like that which is offered at Remainly, can be beneficial in helping couples take these steps and improve their relationship.

Separate your emotions from the situation

When an argument arises, there are usually two problems at play: your emotions and the situation that was the catalyst for the argument.

This means there are two issues to solve; the initial problem and your feelings of anger or irritation towards your partner.

Accepting your feelings as a separate issue will help you deal with the situation more directly and will be more effective when trying to reach a positive resolution.

It can help to set aside the situation and deal with your emotions first. When you take a moment to deal with your anger or stress, you can come back to your partner and the situation with a clear head and rational state of mind.

Take a collaborative approach

When you come to deal with the reason for your argument, take a collaborative approach when working towards a solution. For positive conversations to take place, you should not engage with the contentious issues as you versus your partner but rather, the both of you as a unit versus the problem in question.

Treating your arguments as one-on-one oppositions will only create barriers that make it harder to reach healthy conversations. Collaborative discussions mean that there is no expectation for a winner to emerge on the other side of a fight or argument. This kind of outlook will help to cultivate mutual understanding as well as giving you an opportunity to hear both sides of the discussion.

A couple sat at a table holding hands

Implement your solutions

Some couples may reach a resolution and mutual understanding in their conversations, but never implement the solutions to the problems they talk about. Following through with everything that is discussed is important as it will help ensure that you don’t fall back into the same destructive patterns and have the same arguments again.

Learning to have positive conversations is all well and good, but you must also work to stop repeating patterns and put your solutions into action!

Rewarding constructive behaviour

In the event that an argument does occur, but you are able to turn it around into a constructive conversation, it can help both parties feel like they are on the same page. To make sure you get into the habit of this kind of behaviour, make sure you fully make up and reward yourselves.

Cuddling, watching a movie, or being intimate are good ways the end your discussions on a positive note.

Clarify what you mean

To prevent an argument from escalating, it will be helpful to define certain words or clarify what you mean when you say certain things. This will prevent misunderstandings which can stop further unnecessary arguments from occurring.

If you have a verbal clash with your partner, it will be harder to get to the root of the issue as you may not be discussing the same thing.

Endeavouring to be on the same page is essential when you are moving towards more constructive methods of communication.

A woman talking to her partner

Don’t go on tangents

Making sure you keep to the relevant issues at hand will help stop you arguing for the sake of arguing.

If both you and your partner agree to stay on topic and agree to the parameters of that topic, the conversation can flow more smoothly and productively.

Bringing up past arguments will also fall into this category. Focusing on the past is not productive, and dwelling on previous arguments does nothing to solve current problems. Stay in the present to cultivate healthy discussions and look to a positive future where communication is constructive.

Remainly is an online video service guided by professional couples therapist Andreas L Narum. Our pre-recorded advice videos are sorted into pathways tailored to your suit your relationship. Find out how we could help today.

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