How Do You Get out of a Negative Place in a Relationship?

If you want your life to change for the better, you have to change your thinking. You have to be open to a new perspective and a new level of understanding. This applies to relationships as well.

Sometimes you get stuck in a negative rut in a relationship. It can be destructive or even unhealthy to both of you. Maybe there is regular conflict, arguing or times of insulting each other. Sometimes in close relationships, you can take each other for granted and not treat them as well as you would a non-family member or friend. This is not good. The best thing is to create an environment at home that is nurturing and positive for all the family members.

Maybe you have come to a place of being aware that you are in a negative place and don’t like what is going on in a relationship. How to change it?

7  Tips to Get Out of a Negative Place

1.    Recognize you cannot change the other person. You can only
change yourself.

2.    Analyze what it is about you that causes you to respond the way you do.

3.    Read, listen to audio or videos on healthy relationships. Be open to how you can change your thinking and behavior.

4.    Look for a different perspective on the situation. Ask God to help you to see the situation with fresh eyes and to show you how you can change.

5.    Give up the old to embrace the new. You have to be willing to give up the old ways to embrace the new.

6.    Decide on specific attitudes or actions you are going to do different. When you make different choices, you are free to be a new and different person.

7.    Seek help, support and accountability.  Ask a good friend to be there for you to report how it’s going and maybe even to hold you accountable. Seek wise counseling from people who understand how to have healthy relationships. Ask God to help you. He is eager to help you move to a better place and has all the wisdom in the world to give to you.

One time when one of my daughters was seventeen, tension filled the air whenever we tried to communicate. I didn’t like what was going on so I decided to make some positive changes in the way I approached her and talked to her. I followed the steps above.

My attitude changed. I overlooked more of her faults, tried to be more patient and positive with her. When I had to correct her, I did it in a way that preserved her dignity. I didn’t do it perfectly. However, when I made mistakes and tried to learn from each one.

Over time, our relationship improved dramatically. She never did change and to this day, I see some of her old behavior with others but not with me. When she’s with me, because of the way I treat her she is able to come up to a higher level. Some day when she decides to change, she will have had the positive behavior modeled for her.

This is not easy and it is a learning process so give yourself some grace. Once you decide on your new behavior, it’s often like a baby learning to walk, you fall down, get back up, fall down and get back up but eventually you’ll get it!

The reward for you? More peace in your heart and relationships!

…put on the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge in the image of its Creator. Colossians 3:10 (NIV)

Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. Colossians 3:12 (NIV)

What about you? What has your experience been? Share with us in the comments below.

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