What do you do if you are stuck at home during the CoronaVirus “Staycation” and you have problems with your ex? This is “self-Divorce Mediation.” This also works for current spouses.
- The best Divorce Mediation or any Mediation is peaceful. Stay calm or calm down fast. Did you know that if you start getting worked up, one study says you have about 7 or 8 seconds to calm down before your body is flooded with “fight-or-flight” chemicals? Even after you seem to “calm down,” these chemicals remain in your system for 12 hours or until you get some sleep. If you or your partner get worked up, best to reschedule your talk until tomorrow.
- Listen. Listen well enough that you can rephrase your partner’s words sentence by sentence, if necessary. Have your partner slow down so you can do this. Don’t even think about what you will say until they’re done speaking. Focus on them, not you. Comment or nod from time to time. They will feel you’re hearing them.
- Pause. Once they have stopped speaking, wait a few seconds before responding to them. Look like you are thoughtfully considering what you say. Hopefully, you have been listening, but this helps them FEEL you have been listening.
- Use “I” language. say what you think and feel, don’t tell them what they are. For example, “when you say this I feel upset,” not “you make me angry.” The first way you are simply stating what happens inside you when they say something. The second way attempts to put the blame on them for what you’re feeling
- Focus on this issue, not the person. “When you were late tonight, it made me sad.” not “you are such a ______ for being late!” The first statement reaches out for sympathy. The second puts your partner on the defensive
- Be specific, not global with your comments. Say, “I’m disappointed you’re watching TV tonight instead of talking.” not “You always start watching TV when I want to talk.” or worse, “You are such a _____! You always watch TV instead of spending time together”
- Brainstorm solutions together. Make sure it’s not the two of you facing off against each other but the two of you trying to tackle a problem together. There are different many ways of parenting kids that work well.
- Identify the problem, don’t assume you know the perfect solution. if you only accept your solution, not any other way of solving the problem you are “locked-in.” When you get “locked-in,” you aren’t able to see and consider other solutions that may be even better than yours. Worse, you may come off as “my way or the highway.” Sadly, they make take you up on that and leave to find an attorney. Do you really want to go to court over this issue?
- Consider a call to me 612-670-7980 or 507-269-9079. I can offer advice or mediate by phone or Facetime. Or you can make an appointment together and agree to let it sit until you can work it out with me. Mediation works. Divorce Mediation is better than Court Battles!