I feel like everyone needs to study anger, closely.
To really get familiar with its messages.Retaliation is something that can engulf any relationship. It works on this dynamic: a significant other intentionally or unintentionally speaks or acts out in ways that make you feel worthless. There are so many different types of worthless feelings, but I am using the word ‘worthless’ as a summary word for all of those feeling. Retaliation is about throwing back the hurt on the wrongdoer. It is a driving need to get even. You hurt me, I hurt you. It is blame.
How many times did you retaliate with a positive result? The reality is that retaliation more often perpetrates feelings of resentment that can build up over the duration of any relationship and eventually sabotage it.
When you feel the need to retaliate use these tactics:
- Don’t take it personally. People’s reactions are usually more about themselves than about the source of their agitation. We all have triggers.
- Slow down. Arguments tend to happen in a moment. Slow down whilst in the process of reacting and the reaction can shift.
- Take a deep breath. Breathing works on the nervous system, resetting your hormones to normal levels.
- Get some space to get perspective.
- Recognize your need. Arguing often involves a power struggle. Two people who need something from each and either person is willing to give it. If you can recognize your need, you can soothe yourself with your own inner voice.
- Find your compassion. The truth is, if someone is angry, they are in pain. Try to understand their trigger.
- Change the mood. Organic tools like nature and music can change your mood instantaneously.
- Let go. The more seriously we take life, the more we become vulnerable to self-inflicted wounded.