Be Curious, Not Furious

Curiosity may have killed the cat but it will  do wonders for your relationship.  The next time your partner, colleague, teenager, parent, or annoying friend does something that triggers your anger, stop . . . breathe . . . and be curious.  Take these three steps away from conflict.

1. Defuse your defensiveness.

Think to yourself: 

I wonder why they’re saying that?

I wonder why they’re behaving that way?

I wonder if they’re suffering?

I wonder what pain is under their anger?

2. Turn the flashlight to yourself.  

Think to yourself:

I wonder why I’m feeling so agitated?

I wonder why I want to behave defensively?

I wonder if I’m suffering?

I wonder what pain is under my anger?

3. Then cultivate a sense of curiosity.

Think to yourself:

I wonder how we can get out of this mess?

I wonder if we can grow together through this?

I wonder if we’ll ever have perspective on this conflict?

I wonder what they’re teaching me?

I wonder what I’m learning?

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