Discussion Topic

Don't Fight Over Stupid Things

Posted on 01/29/10, 09:21 am
This strategy speaks right to the heart of the matter. Fighting over stupid things is another way of saying you're sweating the small stuff - big time! Yet, we see it all of the time: couples arguing and bickering over the most ridiculous things. People argue over who misplaced the scissors, whose turn it is to take out the trash, which one of you has more free time, who works harder, or whether or not you had fun at last year's family reunion! People argue over who is a better driver or a more deidcated parent, or who came in second place in a contest that took place last year. People get furious over having to wait a few minutes when their partner is running a little late, when their table manners fall short of perfection, or when their partner misinterprets a fact. We even know a woman who started a fight because her husband put the towels in the wrong bathroom! Wow. What could possibly be more significant than that?

Ironically, many couples will tell you that they rarely bicker over truly significant issues. So it seems to make sense that if one or both persons in a relationship could eliminate all fights (give or take a few) over stupid things, all would be well - at least most of the time.

When you eliminate (or even greatly reduce) the number of little things that bother you enough to fight about, it opens the door to a different kind of relationship. It's so much fun to be around someone who isn't always bothered by something - it's refreshing, inviting, and nourishing. When you refuse to fight over stupid things, you can become true pals again - partners in every sense of the word.

When things don't get to you so much, when your patience and persepective are intact, you reinforce (or remind) your partner why he or she is so fond of you - your sense of humor begins to come out, you become more interesting and introspective, and you're just plain more fun to be around.

Both of us have always made the assumption that a good relationship is something people crave for many reasons - not the least of which is that when you're with someone who isn't easily bothered, who doesn't sweat the small stuff in love, it's extremely stress-reducing because you know it's ok to be yourself in your partner's presence - it's ok to be human. But this gift goes both ways. In other words, you not only want to be around someone who makes life seem easier and more fun, but you also want to be one of those people for your partner. If you can become less inclined to fight over silly little things, you will become far more desirable to your partner in every sense of the word.

Remember that, far from being stress-reducing, it's stress-producing and a real drag to be around someone who is always irritated at something you're doing and always picking a fight over some stupid thing. Why would you even want to be around someone who is always a second away from starting a fight? It's not fun, and it's incredibly stressful.

The solution is really quite simple, mostly it involves intention. The trick, it seems, is to begin to see irrelevant and unimportant things in their proper perspective. It's helpful to reflect on those things that are really important and to make a commitment to let go of almost everything else. Ask yourself the question "Do I want my life to be about fighting over stupid things and demanding that everyone else, especially the people I love, be different?" By simply asking this question in such a direct and honest manner, the answer will become an obvious..no.

You'll begin to see that when you get annoyed and bothered enough to fight over stupid things, what you're really doing is defining yourself as a partner who is unable to stay focused on the gifts and strengths of your relationship. This can be a humbling, if not frightening, realization. Yet, it's an important insight. Because once you turn your judgements around in this manner and see how you are contributing to the problem, you can begin to shift away from this tendency - and instead learn to let the little things go and remain focused on what's right in your relationship. It's that simple.

We can't tell you how much more love you will experrience and how much more fun you will have when you put this strategy into practice. From now on, when you catch yourself fighting over stupid little things, laugh at yourself and let it go. Make being happy more important than being stubborn. Soon this could be a habit that will change the course of your relationship forever.


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Based on the AMAZING book written by Richard & Christine Carlson (husband and wife). I will post chapters from the book - they are truly words to live by.