Pick your Battles


Why do we insist on creating unnecessary strife, both consciously and subconsciously?  We need to pick our battles, because every situation does not warrant an argument or screaming match.  Most of our aggressive behavior toward resolution comes from how we saw others in our families or those closest to us resolve disputes.  We have to choose which path we will take in order to maintain the peace, as well as our sanity.  They say, “That sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me.”  I completely disagree, because words can cut like a two edge sword.   Sometimes it’s like an out-of-body experience that takes over and we begin shooting below the belt, and these are things that we can’t take back no matter how hard we try. 

After we retire to our separate corners and think about all that has transpired, we replay each horrific word that was exchanged and a sense of regret comes over us, wishing we could have a do over.  The sad part about it is, each time we go through this, we know what the end result will be, but can’t seem to control our erratic emotions. 

More than not, the arguments stem from something that has nothing to do with him/her, but as simple as having a bad day at work, or someone else has made you upset for the day, but we bring all this excess baggage home with us.  If these are things that you have identified as triggers, you can make the decision to take some quiet time to yourself until you have calmed down.  This way, you can discuss what made you upset, and your mate can offer solace and not feel like they’re being attacked.  He/She is not the enemy! 

The simple things we argue about:

  • The infamous toilet seat
  • Dinner choices
  • Temperature of  the house
  • What to watch on television

The first thing you must do is sit down and calmly discuss the reasons for the disputes and find a better way to discuss them without flaring tempers.  As mature adults, you have to make the decision of what’s more important, you winning or your relationship.  The core reason why the argument continues is because we want to have the last word.  If you feel you are not able to resolve your disputes without it escalating, it’s time to get some professional help and get to the root of the real problem.  You will find that the disputes usually stem from something deeper than what’s on the surface.

Pick your battles and learn to walk away.  It’s perfectly okay to apologize, even if you feel you were right!  Compromise and humility goes a long way!

-Terry D.

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