Stay Calm in a Divorce

Posted by Michael HillerFeb 25, 20180 Comments

1. Listening to What Triggers You

A hot button or trigger word can be words, a tone of voice, or a particular way someone conveys body language that sets you off. Everyone has different hot buttons and trigger words that can cause them to become angry. When we are feeling triggered we automatically rush to judgment about what the other person is saying or doing.

Key Question: How can you listen past their anger or yours?

Identify your physiological triggers

It is essential to know when you begin feeling triggered, whether your face gets hot, shoulders tense, or your stomach starts turning, being able to recognize when you are triggered helps you to be more efficient in addressing it.

2. Take the judgment out of what happened

When we are in a hot-button moment, we unconsciously jump to judgment. We feel accused, devalued, disrespected, or powerless. We judge what the person said and frame it negatively without considering that what we interpreted may not have been what the person intended.

3. Breathe to Calm Judgmental Thoughts

Take deep breaths to calm yourself when you are feeling triggered. By taking deep breaths, you allow oxygen to the brain which can directly impact the adrenaline pumping through your system. By calming yourself down, you allow yourself to hear what the other person is saying without becoming defensive.

4. Be Curious in Conversation

Ask the person questions about what they are thinking and feeling, to learn more about what is going on with them. Observe what is going on with the other person so you can begin to understand and question the situation.

5. Develop Self- Empathy

Identify your feeling words to understand and determine what exactly you need at that moment.  Listen carefully to what is being said and acknowledge what has been said and the feelings behind what has been said.

Managing triggers in the midst of the divorce process can be challenging.  But, if you are able to manage those triggers you have a better chance of reaching a divorce settlement without battling it out in court.  Not having to go to court will save money and creates better opportunities for the divorcing couple to be better parents after the divorce is finalized.