How to not be so defensive in a relationship
Defensive Quotes (26 quotes)
How to Stop Being Defensive in Close Relationships
Linda Carroll, M. She is the author of the highly acclaimed book 'Love Cycles: The Five Essential Stages of Lasting Love,' which has been translated into four languages. Of course, we are all wired to protect ourselves — so most of us get defensive at least sometimes. But if you find that either you or your partner is always on guard, waiting on the front-lines to pounce into a defensive mode of communicating, it can be deeply harmful to the relationship. Here are 12 truths about defensiveness — what it is and why it happens — that can help us better understand this self-protecting impulse and especially when it gets precarious.
Most of us are defensive in close relationships. If we're not, we have to interact with people who are. It is the relational disease of our culture and the one that imprisons and destroys intimacy, and prevents love and connection between partners and friends. Why are we so defensive and what are we so afraid of? And how do we make it stop?
But in the long term, it undermines us and our relationships. So, for example, if you're feeling defensive after a not-so-stellar work review.
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Hit the “Pause” Button
Like all married couples do at one time or another, John and Cindy have fallen into a routine. This one is a little more unhealthy: Whenever Cindy brings up any subject that could be considered even remotely touchy, John goes into full red-alert mode. Do I have to do everything around here? Sound familiar? If it does, know that this behavior can lead to a relationship death spiral. Jisun Fisher, a licensed psychologist and certified positive psychology practitioner. Defensiveness is a gut reaction to feeling alone or unfairly attacked or criticized.
Defensiveness can pop up in all kinds of places, and in all kinds of ways. You might find yourself reacting angrily to criticism at work, or hastily defending something you said to your partner. Whatever the case may be, it can help to learn how to be less defensive. Because let's be honest — it ain't a great feeling. Forget about how difficult it is to be on the receiving end of intense defensiveness. It also totally sucks to be the one who feels hurt or criticized enough to act that way. That's because snappy comebacks and withering stares usually come from a place of inner pain and turmoil.