4. Compromise is the key
In a marriage and especially during a conflict, there is no such thing as right or wrong. Very often, in an argument, it is 'my point of view' versus 'your point of view'. Taking the middle path is the key. It is ideal to put yourself in your partners' shoes and view things from his/her perspective. But empathizing with your partner is not always easy. If it were, conflict resolution would be a piece of cake. Don't make it a win-lose fight . Mutual understanding and arriving at an amicable agreement that respects everyone's needs is crucial. If you're harping on your partner's faults and failings and not taking their feelings into account, while hammering in your point of view, you're headed the wrong way. Healthy relationships focus on resolving problems and not on who comes out on top.
5. Apologize if you're wrong
In a marriage, when you're wrong and you know it, back down and say you're sorry. If you're man (or woman) enough to admit it, it doesn't make you a lesser person. In fact, it's a sign of just how mature and sensitive you are. And if you've ever tried it, you'll notice that unless your partner is really agitated and refusing to see reason, once you say sorry, it just takes the heat out of the argument.
TIP: Download the guide to making up with your partner.
6. Objectivity is important
Objectivity is very difficult to attain in a bitter conflict of interests. But if you can step back and view the situation without being judgmental, it will help the discussion and ultimately the marriage. And if you can be really magnanimous, when your partner is offering an explanation or an olive branch, meet him half way. Give him the benefit of the doubt and you will be amazed how the situation will turn itself around.
7. Don't sleep over an argument
Go down on an argument. It will probably be one of the most restless sleeps you've ever had and will only leave you with a sore head in the morning. And that's not the best way, either to start the day or carry on a discussion. You might be a little calmer but it's always best never to carry anger into the marriage bed and sleep without sorting things out.
8. Don't hold grudges against your spouse
Once you are on your way to ironing out issues, talk them through to their logical conclusion. And once you have settled the problem, learn to let go. Try and close the issue at hand and don't bring it up in future arguments. In a marriage it is always best not to hold grudges.
If both partners in a marriage try and keep in mind these simple steps towards effective conflict resolution, they can possibly avoid a tiny problem escalating into a disaster. A marriage is not all romance and laughter, fun and games. There are ups and then there are downs. And it calls for serious work, on the part of both partners. It takes a certain level of maturity and understanding for two people to make a marriage work. After all, your happiness is at stake.