Every relationship, even the good ones, have conflicts that will never get solved. When you think you moved on from them (by sweeping them under the carpet, most likely), it pops up again some time in the future. According to relationship guru, Dr. John Gottman, about 70% of conflicts that a married couple have are of this nature. He calls them the Perpetual Problems, or Unsolvable Conflicts. They are ‘unsolvable’ because at the root of these schisms are often qualities one partner has (or lacks) that irk the other person. So, when it comes to improving the experience of your relationship, it would be more fruitful to be more accepting of your partner’s strengths and weaknesses, rather than to trying to get them to change fundamentally.Here are some tips that will help you:
- Reevaluate the seriousness of your partner’s flaw.
There are many aspects of our partner’s style and habits that can annoy us, but they are rarely serious enough to get angry about. They may raffle our feathers. But they are certainly not earth-shaking. I, for example, get rattled by my wife’s lack of tech-savviness. She is often at a loss about how to do simple tasks, such as moving files from one folder to another in her mobile phone. They seem to always disappear whenever she tries doing it. And so, I am frequently called upon to rescue her.
- Get to the root of your reaction.
In spite of being the ‘expert,’ I ended up making things worse once or twice. Once, I wiped out her playlists of songs which she had painstakingly download and arranged for her next Zumba lesson. (She is a freelance Zumba instructor, you see.) After some soul-searching, I discovered that it was my fear of making a mistake that bothered me. And I had disguised it as being irritated at my wife’s incompetence. There is often more to our reactions than we realize.
- Acknowledge your own flaws.
To prevent yourself from having the ‘holier-than-thou’ mindset, it helps to have dose of reality once a while. And nothing works better than to acknowledge your own flaws. You have them – at least one. My wife may not be tech-savvy but she is a great wife, mother and cook.
- Accept that we are not the same.
Couples have to accept that they are not the same. And what’s important to one might not be important to the other. In my work, I use Word and Excel frequently, but it is not the case for my wife. But more than that, it is how we are wired differently: I am the precise and calculative engineer-type while she is the extroverted arty type.
- Consider your options.
Now, I can insist that she take some classes and improve her computing skills, but she will probably never be as good as I am. Hence, I will always be frustrated. So, instead of kicking against the goad, I can accept her flaw and be thankful for the opportunity to serve her in this way. Wrapping UpIn relationship, there are many things about the other person that will displease you. You, then, have a choice to make. You can either get mad about it. Or you can accept it. Couples in a relationship need to remember they are not in a competition. They are a team and therefore must learn to complement one another. Do whatever you can to let the relationship win.
In relationship, there are many things about the other person that will displease you. You, then, have a choice to make. You can either get mad about it. Or you can accept it. Couples in a relationship need to remember they are not in a competition. They are a team and therefore must learn to complement one another. Do whatever you can to let the relationship win.