Stop Fighting in 30 Days

Step 5: Learn How to Properly Present Your Gripes

Here's what she needs to do:

Step One: Cool-Off Before Talking to Him
Remember that when you are hot under the collar, you are more likely to resort to Fight Traps that will send your partner psychologically -- if not literally -- packing. If you come at him with too much heat, he will either be deaf to your words or he will leave for real.

Step Two: Drain off Your Anger
Use whatever method works for you -- punch your pillow, scream in the shower, call a friend and bitch, fantasize about beating up your partner (knowing that you won't actually act on your thoughts).

Step Three: Dig Up Love
When you are boiling mad, it's hard to remember that you actually still love your mate. Recall the early days of your relationship or a special day that you shared recently. The feelings of love will temper your anger.

Step Four: Wait for the Right Time
Approaching your partner to discuss a complaint when he's busy with work, hobbies or chores is a formula for failure. Wait until your partner is available.

Step Five: Deliver Your Icebreaker
An opening statement -- what I call an "Icebreaker" -- alerts your mate that you have a problem to discuss. If you come at him in the heat of the moment, you will be labeled another type of breaker, if you get my drift. Instead, you want to break the ice and show that you respect him and care for his feelings. This will set the tone for a productive discussion. Here are some sample Icebreakers: "I have something important to talk over. Do you have a few minutes now?" Or, "I have a problem that I need your input on. Is now a good time?"

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