In the last post, I explained that when you’re feeling triggered or angry with a man, your first instinct may be to attact him – but attacking or blaming a man can make him feel unsafe and cause him to get defensive and “shut down” or pull away from you.
I want to show you how to express yourself without blaming a man or making him “wrong” – so you can actually bring him CLOSER during an argument, rather than push him away.
Here’s a way to express yourself in a way a man can HEAR, even when you’re feeling triggered:
1. When you feel the urge to blame or attack him – STOP.
There’s a very “forward-leaning” quality to blaming or attacking a man. I want you to do the OPPOSITE – stop, lean back, and breathe.
2. Find your feelings.
3. Speak your feelings.
Use the phrase, “I feel __________” or “I’m feeling __________.”
Notice how I’m NOT using the word “you” here – it’s important to not refer to his behavior at all.
Also, don’t use the words “hurt” or “disrespected” here – that’s just like saying “You hurt me…” or “You disrespected me…” – which can make him feel defensive and cause him to shut down.
4. Stop and listen to him.
Don’t go into a long explanation about why you feel this way – in fact, don’t explain yourself at all! Stop and listen to what he says, and repeat steps 1 – 3 if necessary.
You may think that men can’t handle our anger, but that’s just not true. Masculine-energy men can absolutely handle our anger! They just don’t like it when we say it’s THEIR fault.
Saying to a man, “I’m feeling angry right now…” is SO much better than, “I can’t believe you said that, you’re such a jerk!”
This is an example of Rori Raye’s tool of Feeling Messages (Rori is my brilliant mentor who’s eBook, Have The Relationship You Want, truly changed my life and helped me turn my own love life around and attract my amazing husband – click here to get Rori’s AMAZING free newsletters!).
When you take responsibility for what you’re experiencing in the moment, you can get the same message across without holding your man responsible for your feelings.
This can often get to the root of the problem quickly and actually bring him CLOSER when done correctly.
It may sound simple, but this is one of the most challenging communication skills for people to learn since it’s counterintuitive to the way our brains are wired.
When you take the time to get in touch with what you’re feeling and share your experience in the moment, a man can actually HEAR you and will be much less likely to get defensive or “shut down” on you. This is essential to opening the lines of communication.
Instead of repeating old destructive relationship patterns, this can help end recurring conflict so you can safely connect with each other in a way that brings you CLOSER, rather than driving you further apart.