Rules of Engagement: Part 3

Here we are! Part three and the last three rules of engagement. I hope you are enjoying this journey and finding value in these rules, so far. Although we’ve been talking about the rules building on each other, I encourage you to explore which one’s work best for you and your relationship. But the only way you will gain that knowledge is by trying to incorporate each one. (Over time, of course!) Let’s dive in. 

7.    No talk of divorce.  Talking of divorce only creates anxiety and mistrust that you are not committed to a long-term relationship.  It is also very manipulative.  Anytime we are being manipulative, it is not a long-term resolution either.

8.    No blaming.  Try saying this mantra when you feel out of control: “It is not your fault for how I feel.  I am 100% responsible for my own feelings.  Because it is my choice, it is not your responsibility at all.”

9.    Active listening.  As we grow together, we learn how to be better listeners through “active listening.”  In this process, which we have described in one of our other blogs, we repeat back what our partner is saying.  This demonstrates we not only heard them but lets us know if what we heard was accurate.

Remember, the purpose of the rules is to create emotional safety, fairness, and predictable outcomes. Both partners need agreement. If what you are doing is not solving the problem, it is counterproductive. Just don’t do it! 

Now that we have reached the end of our Rules of Engagement series, I would love to hear your thoughts… What rules did you find most helpful? Did any inspire you to create your own set of rules? Leave a comment and let’s discuss! 

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