This month’s positive point with a client happened when we had our session, and as I always do, asked them to share any successes they had in their relationship since we last met.
They referenced two times when they “hit a bump in the road” in their conversation that led them to escalate into an argument, but were able to pull out of it by using the language they had learned in coaching.
The one partner had a habit of asking “Why did you …?” Instead she stopped herself and said, “I need clarification on something,” which helped her husband from becoming defensive.
Defensiveness is a springboard for more finger-pointing, which usually doesn’t lead to a good place.
To prevent defensiveness from entering a conversation, I tell people to “stay in their own yard.” In other words, focus on what you can do to communicate effectively.
Keep your own side of the street clean and you’ll be able to meet in the middle!