Push the Pause Button on the Negative Spin!
Okay. So, I know I'm not the only one who does this, but sometimes when my husband and I get in an argument I have this weird thought that creeps in: "does this mean we should get a divorce?" Yes, I too have those thoughts. Marriage experts would call this "having an overly negative interpretation or point of view." I would agree, but sometimes, arguments are so emotionally loaded or tiring that it just feels so damning for the relationship. I ask myself so often: why do we get so tangled up? Why does anger or irritation have to spell doom when really it's merely a transient feeling that can be erased with a good conversation or a hot bath?
If I really looked at the times when I start to feel like my relationship is fatally flawed over one irritable interaction, I notice that I'm more likely to feel that way when we're disconnected or when we're stressed about other things. It would be times when we haven't seen each other much or when we're distracted with the stresses of money or feeling like there's not enough time to get things done. I'm amazed at the difference when I'm relaxed and happy. Those negative interpretations just don't happen even if a negative interaction shows up.
Consider that feelings aren't necessarily an accurate depiction of the reality of your relationship. Feelings come and go and interpretations of your interactions are dependent on the context from which you're coming from, i.e. are you happy or stressed in that moment?
So. What's my point? Before you let yourself go into a negative spin about your spouse or your relationship as a whole, check yourself. Do you just need to eat? Are your finances bothering you? Do wish your kids could go live with in Alaska for a few days? Is it time to go out on a date together to just reconnect? If the answer is yes, deal with those things (okay, maybe don't send the kids to Alaska).
Take a deep breath and push the pause button on that negative spin.