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3 Steps To Avoid Defensive With Your Partner, From A Therapist

One of our challenges as individuals is to identify the particular triggers that make us want to fight, flee, freeze, or fawn when we face potential conflict. Are there certain types of questions, tones of voice, accusations, or dynamics that tend to send you into high-alert mode? 

Imagine there are two switches that control how we hear, understand, and respond. The first switch turns on a soft, warm light, and is called “connection.” When it’s on, it enhances the other colors in the room and makes us feel open and receptive. The second switch turns on a harsh red light, and is called “protection.” It casts a fearful, angry shadow on everything in the room.

What turns on your “protection switch,” and how can you signal to yourself that it’s time to flip it back to connection? 

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