5. Taking a break
Dealing with conflict and impasse requires a lot of resources. We expend time, energy, emotions, and resources to navigate tough situations. This work can be exhausting, especially if it is prolonged.
If we go too long without taking a break, it might start to seem like we spend all our time talking about the relationship instead of having one. Sometimes it might seem like the only thing that keeps us in community is our disagreement. So how do we replenish our reserves and care for ourselves—after we’ve been driving each other up the wall?
Just like a rubber band snaps back after being stretched, resilient relationships must also bounce back. At a point, we need to take a break from conflict—at the very least, we need to take a break from talking about the conflict. The relationship just needs to be a relationship.
This is how we make the memories together that forge our identities, how we remind ourselves who we are. Creating memories reminds us of the positive things we stand for, even across differences.
No one is obligated to try to build a resilient relationship. We can stay in our bubbles and refuse to speak to anyone who disagrees with us. We are even allowed to cut people off we don’t like.
But consider that something is lost in this polarization. Community matters, and our personal health and the health of our society are dependent on the strength of these bonds. When we work together to practice the art of resilient relationships—to show up for each other, see and be seen, share power, disagree well, and take breaks—there are few conflicts that can break us.
Are you ready to do the work?
Contact Melody at melodystanfordmartin.com. for such informative articles.
Written By Melody Stanford Martin Originally Appeared On Psychology Today