OUCH….how to repair hurts
Have you or your partner ever done or said something that hurt the other person? Have you accidentally “put your foot in your mouth” or used “inflammatory” words when discussing hot topics with your partner? We all make mistakes, so here’s how to do better…
1. FOCUS: most misunderstandings seem to happen in the kitchen while cooking or doing something together. But all too often we are multi tasking. We are cooking, talking, listening to music, kids asking for help….What we need to do is to have focused time to talk without other distractions. I call this focused time “Couch Time”. This focused time allows for both people to be fully present and to hear their partner and to understand the other more clearly. Couch time needs to only take 15-30 minutes every couple days to create more connection.
2. SLOW DOWN: often when we feel somewhat triggered or distracted short cuts are taken in our communication and it often leads to misunderstandings and possibly hurt feelings. Slow down, be curious, ask open ended questions to understand your partner more fully.
3. OUCH: Say this immediately when your partner says something hurtful and address it as soon as possible. When you hurt your partner with unintended hurtful words OWN IT QUICKLY. Repair and say you’re sorry.
4. HONOR THEIR FEELINGS: you may disagree with how your partner “took” your statement, but what really matters is that you repair and apologize that your words hurt them. This helps your partner feel heard and valued.
We all make communication mistakes at times since none of us are perfect. What matters is watching your words, being kind, repairing quickly with your partner when they feel hurt rather than defending your position. If you hurt someone FIX IT FAST. Your relationship and your partner will appreciate it.