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Episode 61: Navigating Difficult Conversations with Your Partner
We love our people, but here’s the thing: conflict is inevitable. That’s because people see and experience the world differently. And that’s okay! In fact, it’s normal! But have you ever noticed the hard conversations you have with your partner can go from 0 to 60 on the emotional rollercoaster, more than any other relationship can? Why is that? And how can we navigate those conversations while respecting our partner’s feelings—and our own? Emily breaks down how to spot when you’re about to spiral into a heated moment, different patterns of conflict you may use to fight, and how to know when it’s time to agree to disagree, or even take a few minutes to cool off from a hot topic. It’s thorny, it’s hard, but finding your way through a hard conversation happens through a bit of love, respect, humility—and a whole lot of listening.
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“No matter what your intentions are, no matter how softly you bring up a sensitive topic, no matter if you do things perfectly or did them just as you agreed to with someone else, you won’t see eye to eye with everyone you meet. That’s normal in every relationship. Even with the partner you love so much.” – Emily Ley
“Healthy relationships rely on both partners being attuned to and cared for. It's not up to the person who's naturally gifted at maintaining a relationship to make sure that it's healthy. It's up to both parties.” – Emily Ley
“As much as you love your partner, as much as they have your best interests at heart, they are not a mind reader. They don't always know what you need. They don't always know when you're mad or you're hurting, and they're not always going to ask. It's up to you to communicate what you need from them and when you need them to step it up for you.” – Emily Ley
A Blessing for Your Week
May you remember that disagreements happen, even between people who love each other—and that’s okay.
May you show up in difficult conversations in a way that honors your loved ones, and also yourself.
And above all, may you remember the things that unite you far more than the things that divide you.
Simplicity Tip of the Week
When you’re in the middle of a problem with someone else, it can feel impossible to untangle yourself out of it. But sometimes, all you need is a shift in perspective. Grab a pencil and paper and write out the problem—what happened, how you feel about it, everything. Even if you never share what you wrote, sometimes just putting your thoughts on paper helps you see the situation a bit differently, and diffuses some of the high-key emotions surrounding the situation.
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Resources, Links, Mentions from This Episode
- Book: I Want This to Work: An Inclusive Guide to Navigating the Most Difficult Relationship Issues We Face in the Modern Age by Elizabeth Earnshaw
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