What can I learn? — source Gottman Institute

Stephen Covey writes, “We judge ourselves by our intentions and others by their behaviour.”

Accordingly, it is likely our first impulse to build a defense of our behavior any time our intentions are misinterpreted.

I’m not a bad person! If only I could make you understand. 

It’s a difficult impulse to corral.

Next time you find yourself thinking, “How can I make them understand?” try asking, “What can I learn from this?” instead.

What can you learn so that, in the future, your behavior and your intentions will be more closely aligned? How can you make sure your partner is getting the message you intended? 

Source: Gottman Institute