Throughout years of being together, every long-term relationship or marriage experiences bumpy patches along the way. After the honeymoon phase fades out, some people find themselves experiencing more friction with their partners. How can we minimize the small common arguments? Our individual subjective views make it hard to let go of small issues, which can then turn into pent-up frustration.
Let’s examine the common points of frustration in a household and find out how to better resolve them.
Common Arguments Between Couples
Cooperation and empathetic communication are vital in a loving and lasting relationship. Frustration can build up when one feels like the other is lacking in the conscious efforts of these elements.
Uneven Household Chores
Uneven understandings of cleanliness and chores are easy sources for frustration. If one spends the day at a demanding job only to come back to a partner lazily lounging in a messy house, understandably, it can result in unpleasant feelings. Household chores don’t only imply the physical necessities. Emotional labor can be a huge component as well.
When one has too much pride to accept differences or doesn’t know how to handle disagreements, it becomes a problem. The will to communicate decreases in a partner if they feel like they’re never heard.
Not Keeping Promises
Tensions can build up when promises are broken. If one promises to handle a certain task and doesn’t follow through, the other can feel overwhelmed with more on their list to handle. We all hold hope in promises made. Thus, we also feel very disappointed when promises are broken for selfish or uncommunicated reasons.
4 Things to Try When You Feel Frustrated
A big portion of our frustrations happens when our message isn’t conveyed properly. Sure, we can blame communication skills, but presuming that you’ve already established a certain kind of dynamic in how you argue throughout the years, it’s not easy to create immediate change.
Here are 4 suggestions that can help when you’re feeling frustrated with your partner.
Create Space for Alone Time
Once we’re upset with our partner, even the sight of them can set us off. To avoid that, spend some alone time to cool off. There’s no need to live separate lives for this, just take a few hours off to reflect and recharge your positive energies.
A few minutes of internal positive conversations can help us cope with stressful situations. Try to hold conversations with yourself in a second-person perspective while giving yourself genuine advice. This method helps people regain an objective view of their stress.
We go into more details on how to do this in another post if you’re interested.
Tell Them How You Feel
Speak with your partner about how you feel. Your partner isn’t intentionally trying to make you unhappy. Oftentimes, they may not realize that you’re even frustrated. Talk to them directly. It will help them understand that there are concerns.
Let’s also be mindful of the tone when we speak to our partners. If you’re frustrated with them for never putting their dirty clothes in the laundry basket, don’t tell them to, “stop it.” Instead, tell them that you would appreciate it if they could put their dirty clothes in the laundry basket, or in fact, how happy it makes you feel when they do. Choose your wording wisely so that they can understand how their action impacts your emotions.
Take A Break for Hobbies
Stress-relieving methods are important in lasting relationships. We recommend you find a hobby you really enjoy. When we focus on hobbies, we can turn our negative energies into positive ones.
In recent years, many couples choose to both work rather than hold traditional roles. If you are both working and busy, try to choose a hobby that allows for participation anytime, anywhere, and in small increments. This way the hobby doesn’t get in the way of the quality time you spend together with your partner.
Physical activities like dancing can provide both stress relief and better physical health. We go into more details in our past post about dancing and stress relief.
Simply, sharing feelings with a third person helps with stress. One university study found that 80% of the negative feelings we shared were “anger.” This means many of us already feel frustrated about something and tend to relieve it through sharing.
We feel lighter and gain helpful perspectives when we share our problems with our local community, offices, friends, or family. People with similar experiences can share their solutions and stories. Once we feel heard and well advised, we can head home with a better outlook.
If you feel hesitant talking about your problems to someone you know, you can also try talking to an AI chatbot. SELF MIND is an AI app developed to assist anyone through their life struggles.
Maintaining A Healthy Romantic Relationship
No matter how close partners are, small indifferences and arguments can still happen. Instead of bottling your feelings inside, it’s important to have stress outlets so that you can cool off and come back feeling calm and collected. Once couples can communicate effectively through objective conversations, they can work on figuring out and working towards a solution together. Couples that can work through their problems may find their bonds grow stronger as well.
Reference：Kawase, T. (2000). Why People Talk About Their Emotion? Miyazaki University Humanities Departmental Bulletin Paper, 7(1), 135–149. http://id.nii.ac.jp/1143/00000652/
Cascio, C. N., O’Donnell, M. B., Tinney, F. J., Lieberman, M. D., Taylor, S. E., Strecher, V. J., & Falk, E. B. (2015). Self-affirmation activates brain systems associated with self-related processing and reward and is reinforced by future orientation. Social Cognitive and Affective Neuroscience, 11(4), 621–629. https://doi.org/10.1093/scan/nsv136
Okada, N., Nakata, A., Nagano, M., Sakai, K., Takai, K., Kodama, H., & Kobayashi, T. (2018). Stressors and the Sense of Coherence Related to the Mental Health of Nurses Assuming the Roles of Wives and/or Mothers – Investigation into the Effects of Leaving Jobs Because of Marriage, Childbirth, and Childrearing. Journal of UOEH, 40(1), 53–63. https://www.jstage.jst.go.jp/article/juoeh/40/1/40_53/_pdf/-char/ja