You are going to face conflict. Conflict happens whenever there are two or more people in a room. Conflict occurs when people have different opinions. Conflict is neither good nor bad.
If you are honest, you will acknowledge that you and your partner don’t agree on everything. You see the world differently because of the influence of personality.
A healthy marriage requires both of you to know your selves. A great tool to help you do this is the Enneagram. In the Enneagram, there are nine different types, with each type having its strengths and weaknesses.
Want to Learn More About the Enneagram? Click Here
Learning your Enneagram type gives you a psychological-spiritual map to help you become conscious of the automatic behaviours you do unconsciously. Often these are behaviours that no longer serve you.
Once you become conscious of how you show up in the world, you can make different choices that will serve you better. As you learn to walk your talk, you will be better able to resolve conflict with your partner. You will also be more open to hearing what your partner has to say.
If you both do your work, it will be much easier to find win-win solutions to resolve your disagreements.
With the Enneagram as your starting point, here are three ways to overcome conflict and save your marriage.
1. Learn to become an active listener:
When your mind is over-active, it is hard for you to hear another person’s perspective. To become an active listener requires you to quiet your mind to focus on what your partner is saying.
Find a practice to quiet your mind such as meditation, mindfulness, yoga, center prayer and anything else that helps you calm your mind without drugs.
Listen not only through your mind but also through your body’s sensations and heart’s emotions; it will help you access your inner wisdom.
Quieting your mind and paying attention to your inner wisdom will give you and your partner the ability to find solutions that work for you both. There is no longer the need for winners and losers.
2. Practice curiosity:
Your inner critic always gets you in trouble. It becomes a problem when you react to your partner because it triggers insecurity within you. The trouble begins when you get caught up in your inner critic’s negative energy, making it difficult for you to hear the perspective of your partner.
When you catch yourself getting sabotaged by your inner critic, it is time for you to get curious. Ask yourself why you are reacting the way you are. You might ask yourself what your fear is.
Take some time to calm down and ask yourself if this belief or proposal from your partner is that bad or dangerous. Your inner critic is often full of lies. You are probably a lot more courageous than you want to admit.
If you don’t understand what your partner is saying, ask questions to help you understand their point of view.
If you experience your partner acting out, stay curious about what is happening for them. Do not judge them and let them know you want to understand them.
Your inner critic likes to be dualistic. However, with the Enneagram help, you can learn a third way that can help you and you resolve disputes.
There is often a solution that will be that will become obvious to you both when you start to brainstorm solutions.
3. Brainstorm win-win solutions:
Has an idea from your partner sparked a strong reaction? You may immediately go into battle determined to prove them wrong.
When you can understand your reaction and your partner’s thoughts, you are ready to brainstorm a win-win solution.
When you start brainstorming, agree to put your ideas on paper that you both can see. Allow thoughts to flow without getting caught up in them. When you complete the list, take some time to explore a solution you can both can accept.
Agree to a plan to help make it happen and set a time, date and place to check how you are both doing. Commit to being open and honest with each other.
When you are confident that you have made another significant step in your relationship, do something to celebrate your achievement. The more you succeed will give you greater confidence to do this again over and over.
With practice, you will show up more and more as your authentic self. The more you are connected to your inner world and can listen with your three centers of intelligence body (sensations), heart (emotions) and head (mind), you will find it easier and less stressful to resolve conflict.
Wonder How to Use the Enneagram to foreshadow the Challenges You’ll Have with Your Spouse? Click Here
Conflict is normal. However, it does not need to be a fight. With practice, you and your partner will learn to navigate conflict that will be respectful of you both.
Learning to resolve conflict is never easy work, but rewarding when you can move ahead in life with your love genuinely bringing out the best in you both.
I am Roland Legge, an Identity Coach here to help you to resolve conflict in your intimate relationship. You can join my private newsletter list for Free Monthly Advice and access your Free Online Enneagram Test