Instant Fight Stoppers
13. Know when to quit
Don't look for closure in the middle of the argument by hounding your mate
to validate your point, says Weiner-Davis. If he gives in, even grudgingly,
back off and let him save face. Sometimes an argument goes on simply because
one person refuses to let it end. John Schofield, 40, of Chippewa, PA, uses
this simple reminder: "I think of that old song 'The Gambler' by Kenny
Rogers — the one that goes, 'You've got to know when to hold 'em, know when to
fold 'em; know when to walk away, know when to run.'"
14. Think happy thoughts
Try to remind yourself of why the two of you are together in the first
place, using a specific image. "When I'm mad at my husband, I take a deep
breath and make myself recall that magic moment when we first met, or how
caring he is when I'm sick, or what great sex we had last night," says Kate
Scott, 28, of Houston, TX.
15. Call on a higher power
No matter what your religious faith, prayer can be a powerful force. Not
long ago, 40-year-old Sue Lewis of Grand Rapid, was driving to a weekend
marriage retreat with her husband. "I was suffering from PMS, I was cranky,
and we started fighting about money," she says. In the middle of the
argument, the same thought struck her and her husband: "We were on our way
to a church retreat to improve our marriage, and here we were, bickering. So we
talked about the fact that we had invited God into our marriage and that we
should call on him during the tough times. We prayed as we drove; it was
amazing how smoothly the rest of the weekend went."
16. Ask yourself: "Would I rather be right — or be happy?"
Quell the urge to prove yourself right every time, even if you are the most
blameless woman on the planet. "You can be right and miserable for the rest
of your life," says Weiner-Davis. "You need to move beyond that
Originally published on October 15, 2007
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