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Arguing Too Much: When You or Someone You Love Argues Excessively

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  • Arguing Too Much: When You or Someone You Love Argues Excessively

    In any relationship, some arguments can be a good thing. Healthy arguments are those that allow you to vent some steam, that don't involve cruel or nasty remarks, and that are resolved fully in a relatively short amount of time. Other arguments, however, can devastate your relationship. 'If your disagreements with your partner are festering and living on between arguments, so you feel that each argument is merely a continuation of the one before, then you are locked into a pattern that can deconstruct your relationship,' says Hale Dwoskin, CEO and director of training of Sedona Training Associates.

    Not only is your relationship at risk from this type of excessive arguing, but so is your health.

    Couples that have hostile arguments -- those that involve domineering, controlling or otherwise nasty remarks -- are more likely to develop heart disease than couples who have calm discussions, according to University of Utah researchers.

    Hostile arguments harm your health by triggering a stress response that makes your blood pressure stay high even after the argument is over. This, in turn, may damage your blood vessels and lead to clogged arteries, which can trigger a heart attack. Indeed, the researchers found that compared to calm arguers:
    • Wives who argued with hostility had double the amount of clogged arteries -- and even worse clogs if their husbands were also hostile.
    • Husbands who made domineering statements or had a wife who did had arteries that were 1.5 times more clogged.

    What was causing all of these hostile arguments? Likely things that you have argued about as well: in-laws, finances and household chores.

    Of course, there are deeper issues at play when you argue about practical matters. Key underlying causes of arguments, particularly among couples, include:
    • Not feeling appreciated
    • Needing more affection
    • Not feeling respected
    • Feeling insecure
    • Built up resentments from the past (such as a forgotten birthday)
    • Feeling you’re carrying more of the responsibility/burden

    Resolving Arguments for a Peaceful, Deep Relationship

    Your relationship will probably always include disagreements, but the following tips will help to keep these disagreements on a superficial level so they make your relationship stronger instead of weaker.

    1. Let go of wanting to be right. It's easy to feel the need to defend your position to the end, but does it really matter who is right? Probably not. What matters is enjoying your relationship. The Sedona Method is the best tool available to show you how to easily let go of your 'need to be right at any cost.'
    2. See their point of view. 'Do your best to see the argument from their point of view,' Dwoskin says. 'You can even role play where you argue from the other person's point of view and they argue from yours. By doing this you both stretch and can often resolve even long-standing disagreements.'
    3. Be kind. Make an effort not to use hostile words, insults or hurtful comments. When you have a disagreement, think of it as a discussion, not an argument. A few kind words when you're not arguing will also go a long way toward repairing your relationship.
    4. If you did something wrong, admit it. Take responsibility, apologize and move forward from there.
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