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Win Every Argument

It's January. Time for all those post-holiday arguments. You two have different goals for the new year. You have different hurts left over from last year. You have different fears, different challenges ahead. You have different ideas of how important those threats or challenges will be. You have different ideas how to deal with them.

Break out the arguments.

And crank up the stakes. Your spouse may well be the single most important person in your life. If you can't get him or her to agree with you, it feels scary. If you're human, you withdraw from your spouse to reduce the fear or you argue louder to get the agreement you need to feel safe.

So, how do you skip all the usual pain?

Jump sides and, TOGETHER, look for the Third Alternative that gives both of you everything you like about what you're arguing for and nothing of what you're arguing against.

In other words, win every argument, and be a hero to your spouse at the same time.

Here are some past posts on how to find your Third Alternative:
The Third Alternative
Disagreements Turn Into Gifts
Married to a Collector of Stuff? Don't Ask Dr. Phil to Set Him Straight
Weight Gain and Divorce
Three Tips for Getting the Most From Your Marriage
Doing What Your Spouse Doesn't Want You to Do
When Marriage Crumbles
David and Michelle Paige Paterson: What We Can Learn from their Admissions
Round Up the Usual Suspects

Have a great New Year!


A wise happily married man for over 40 years told me when i first got married. If both of you have the same opinion one of you is not needed. That advice has rang true in my marriage now for nearly 10 years. It is my wife's perspective that I fell in love with even if I dont agree with her. We can fight have disagreement and what not but she is my wife and I love her for EXACTLY who she is. Lastly LOVE is a Verb, an action not a feeling.

Brilliant, Bobby! Thanks. We grow through our discussions with a spouse whose perspective is trusted and different from our own. One of the best parts of marriage, in my opinion.

I think the key to arguments is the basis for this site itself: assume love. If both parties assume that their partners love them and value the relationship, then it's easier to find compromise and "third alternatives". The opposite of love is fear, and fear is the great relationship killer.

Exactly, Jay! Fear is definitely a relationship killer. When we assume love (ie, start there and look for danger only when our mate's actions cannot be explained as the sane acts of a loving person), it drives out fear. Without the fear, a conflict is just a problem to be solved, and with two heads instead of just one.

What a delight to discover your blog post about this blog. I hope all my readers will pop on over and pay you a visit.

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Patty Newbold is a widow who got it right the second time...

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