Ways to Build Constructive Power in Couples and Families

Do

·        Use kind language even when you are angry

·        Listen to the other person even if you strongly disagree.

·        Take a time out to calm yourself so you won’t say something you will regret later.

·        Allow the other person to speak and share their perspective even if you have the authority to make the final decision. This allows the other person to feel heard even if you are not able to change your response.

·        Understand how your role in the family gives you more or less power in relation to others.

Don’t

·        Make demands without also offering something of benefit to the other person.

·        Use the silent treatment. This blocks input from another person and is hurtful to self as well as the other person.

·        Call names.

·        Strike out in anger either physically or verbally.

·        Force someone to do something that goes against their values.