If you have relationships you have stress because relationships cause stress. If you have difficult relationships you have even more stress.
So you may think there’s nothing you can do about it because your stress in the relationship revolves around what the other person is doing or not doing. The good news is there is a lot you can do to decrease your relationship stress to de-stress yourself even if the other person doesn’t change at all.
Here are 12 things you can do to relieve relationship stress.
1. Accept that you can’t change the other person
Accept that you’re powerless over them and you cannot make this person change. When you accept that it causes you to be much less stressed about the other person.
You let go of all these misguided attempts to try to force the other person to change which caused you a whole lot of stress and make your relationship more stressful.
2. Stop reacting to what the other person is doing
Don’t allow that person’s actions, inactions, choices, moods, or whatever it is to affect you to where you’re always reacting instead of deciding and choosing how you want to act and how you want to be what you want to do. So stop reacting.
3. Stop arguing
If the person is accusing, you blaming you, saying things that aren’t true about you don’t defend yourself and don’t argue. Refuse to get drawn into it.
If the person keeps drawing you in you can answer with really short answers like “no, maybe, hmm, I’ll think about it, thanks for sharing, appreciate you letting me know how you feel”.
You can answer that and that’s better than having a long argument and defending yourself with a person who doesn’t care what you’re saying. They don’t care about what you’re defending they just want to argue with you. They just want to be mad. Don’t get drawn in.
4. Stop pushing anyone but yourself
Focus on making you do what you want to do and what you know you should do. But don’t try to make other people. They got to push themselves and they’ve got to make their own choices.
They’ve got to do what they need to do in life. Find a way to be happy and to be fulfilled outside of the relationship independent of what this other person is doing.
That doesn’t mean to have an affair, it doesn’t mean abandon your children. It just means don’t solely put all your eggs in one basket one relationship and depend on that relationship to be everything you need.
If you do you’re going to be incredibly stressed when it’s not. You have the right to do things that make you happy and fulfill you that aren’t a part of the relationship.
5. Decrease your expectations
Accept who the person is and expect them to be that person. That doesn’t mean you have to tolerate it, it doesn’t mean you can’t set boundaries. It just means make your expectations reasonable for the reality that you live with the person that this person really is.
So you don’t have all these false hopes where you go up and down and you’re expecting the person to do a certain thing and they disappoint you again and just adjust those expectations.
6. Let the person be responsible for his or her own life
You are not responsible for anybody else’s life. You are responsible for your own life. So let the person bear the responsibility let them deal with the fallout let them bear the consequences and let them choose. You do not have to do it.
7. Stop getting involved with problems that are not your
When somebody has a problem and they present it to you it is not your job in life to fix their problem and to solve their problem and to explain how they can solve their problem. Instead, develop this attitude of “wow what are you going to do about that” and just let it be there.
8. Set boundaries
Set boundaries and those things in your life that really are unacceptable that are not okay.
9. Don’t force yourself to make decisions
If you’re not ready to make a decision because sometimes we’re just not ready don’t force yourself. For today if you’re in a marriage and it’s a difficult marriage and you’re wondering should I stay should I leave if you’re in that marriage for today and you’re not leaving and that’s where you are.
Don’t spend the entire day with all of your emotional energy thinking should I stay should I leave. If you need to you’ll know when it’s time that you need to do that.
10. Trust that you know that you will know what you need to know at the right time
Now that sounds kind of confusing. Instead of being obsessed with trying to figure out what about this what about that finding thing out searching always on guard hyper-vigilant trust that it will be revealed to you at the right time.
If you really do need to discover at that time what is going on and then you might have to push yourself to do that but normally just trust that if you’re worried that a person has isn’t going to maintain their sobriety rather than being hyper-vigilant you’ll know. you’ll know when you need to know.
11. Share a weighted blanket
You can see that all of these things have to do with changing your attitude not changing the other person and that is how you decrease your relationship stress.