Self-Awareness is the Key in Couples Conflict Resolution

Conflict is a normal part of relationships. While it can be disruptive, being able to disagree well also presents an opportunity for growth and deeper understanding.

The key to handling conflict like a pro lies in the ability to understand your thoughts, emotions, and triggers. This is the definition of self-awareness, and it is the foundation for resolving those emotional impasses in a positive way.

Hi, I’m Fae Foster, a therapist at Syrona Counseling Retreats, and in this article, we’ll explore why self-awareness is so important and how it helps you resolve conflicts effectively.


It helps You Identify Your Triggers


Conflict pushes our buttons because it triggers strong emotions.

Do you get defensive? Do you respond in kind when someone is critical? Maybe you shut down because you feel overwhelmed.

If you can understand your triggers, you can learn to change your responses.


It Helps You Take Ownership of Your Reactions


We can’t change what we don’t know is a problem.

While it’s true that we can- and should- control our reactions, we can’t control them if we don’t know what they are, why they are there, or what we want to do with them. Self-awareness opens the door to change.


It Helps You Understand Your Communication Style


Self-awareness is how you learn that you have a communication style. And then- it is why you can adjust your style for a more effective outcome.

For example, in conflict, do you withdraw? Get overly critical? Fall apart emotionally? You might want to change these reactions, but without self-awareness, you won’t know how to start.


How can you develop self-awareness?


Be Curious

Get comfortable with being curious about your reactions.

Ask yourself questions like: What made me angry, and why? Why did I react that way? What was I thinking? Did the conflict end the way I wanted? If not, why?

Journaling or meditation are useful ways to listen for answers. Simply by being curious, you can identify patterns that help you have more conscious control over how you show up.


Ask for Feedback

Ask trusted friends or colleagues for honest feedback on your communication style.

Others see you through a different lens, therefore their perspective is highly valuable.

For example, a friend may point out that you tend to become overly critical when feeling stressed, or that you shy away from expressing your needs directly.

Asking for honest feedback helps you build on your strengths and find out what areas need improving.


Consider Therapy

Self-awareness is therapy’s superpower. No matter the reason that brings people to therapy, a universal outcome is greater self-awareness. With the guidance of a trained professional, you can identify patterns in your thoughts, feelings, and actions, challenge your negative self-talk, and learn why you do what you do.

Therapy also expands your communication toolbox. It teaches you powerful skills like active listening, assertively expressing your needs, and how to handle strong emotions.

Therapy is not the only way – but it is often the fastest way – to gain valuable insights into yourself and develop the key communication skills necessary to navigate conflict like a pro.


Our counseling retreats teach couples how to develop self-awareness and superior communication skills.

Our accelerated format allows you to accomplish months of progress in just 3 days.

If you’re looking for tools to navigate conflict with greater confidence and build stronger relationships, consider scheduling a consultation with us today.

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