Conflict is a natural part of any relationship, including romantic ones. Some amount of conflict is healthy as well. However, how couples handle conflict can significantly impact their relationship. Thus, effective conflict-resolution skills are essential for creating an atmosphere of understanding, empathy, and growth within a relationship. In this article, we’ll explore a few tips for couples to navigate conflict effectively.

  • Open Communication

Effective communication is an essential part of every relationship. However, sometimes partners are unable to communicate openly with each other about their struggles and feelings. This inability to address a conflict directly can lead to unhelpful behaviours such as giving each other the ‘silent treatment’ or using taunts and condescending behaviours to indicate one’s anger. 

Such ways of dealing with conflict are usually unproductive as they are likely to leave your partner confused about how you are feeling and what they can do to address the issue. Thus, it is important to prioritize open communication in the relationship

  • Focus On A Specific Issue

Many times, an argument might start with a specific topic or issue but as emotions escalate and tensions rise, it can easily stray from its original focus. When an argument shifts in different directions, it can become more heated and intense. Partners may also end up bringing up past instances or unresolved issues, further complicating the situation. This often leads to the argument going nowhere. 

To avoid this, focus on dealing with one issue at a given time. Couples who focus on resolving one issue at a time have a better chance of finding a solution

  • Be Calm And Respectful

Arguments or conflicts often lead to a lot of uncomfortable emotions, such as anger, sadness, etc. At such times partners may become physically or verbally aggressive and resort to blaming, insulting or shaming each other. However, blaming or shaming one’s partner can make the conflict worse, instead of motivating them to work towards a solution. Thus, it is important to be calm and respectful at all times no matter how heated the argument becomes.

  • Take Accountability

When we feel angry, hurt or disturbed, it can be extremely difficult to reflect and take ownership of our role in the conflict. However, acknowledging your role in the conflict and taking responsibility shows that you are willing to work towards a solution. When you show accountability, your partner may feel motivated to reciprocate as well.

  • Practice Active Listening

One of the most common mistakes partners make during arguments is that they listen to respond rather than listening to understand each other’s perspectives. When partners listen just for the sake of responding, they are likely to miss out on what the other person is trying to communicate, leading both of them to get stuck in a state of conflict. 

Instead, it might be helpful to practice active listening, a skill where you listen to your partner without interrupting or judging them and focus on their words, emotions, and non-verbal cues to grasp their perspective fully. Active listening is a crucial conflict resolution skill.

  • Take A Break

Conflicts can often be overwhelming, leading to a lot of emotions. When both partners are highly emotional, it can be hard to continue the conversation.  Thus, it can be helpful to take a break when a conflict is highly overwhelming for one partner or both. 

Taking a break during a conflict allows emotions to settle, preventing further escalation. Also, checking in with your partner about their emotional state during the conflict can indicate understanding and empathy

  • Take A ‘We’ Approach

It is important to remember that it’s always you and your partner vs the issue at hand, instead of it being my problem” or “your problem, Thus, it is helpful to frame the conflict as a mutual issue that both of you are committed to solving together. This creates a sense of partnership and encourages collaborative problem-solving.


Conflict resolution is crucial to building a healthy and long-lasting relationship. By implementing the conflict resolution strategies described above, couples can take steps towards building a strong and healthy relationship.

If you are struggling with a lot of conflicts and want to develop conflict-resolution skills, click here to book a session with a trained couples therapist right away


  1. 10 Tips for Healthy Conflict Resolution in Relationships. (2019, May 29). Marriage Advice – Expert Marriage Tips & Advice.
  2. 10 Tips for Solving Relationship Conflicts | Psychology Today. (n.d.). Retrieved April 22, 2024, from
  3. Conflict Resolution in Relationships: 6 Tips to Overcome Challenges. (2022, March 29). Psych Central.

Dhruva Koranne

Dhruva Koranne has completed his Masters in Applied Psychology from Tata Institute of Social Sciences, BALM. He has been practicing as a counsellor since 2020 and works to create a safe space for clients where they can open up. In addition to this, Dhruva loves researching and studying about upcoming theories in the field of Psychology. Connect with him on Linkedin