Conflict in confined quarters
Sometimes, normal people get placed in abnormal situations. Having the whole family working from home and going to school online (you know, like a pandemic) probably counts. Most of us generally love being around each other and sharing time together but work, school and other responsibilities get in the way.
Well guess what? Now you get to spend all the time in the world with the ones you love! Hooray!!! Right... Oh, but not by choice? Maybe I have to rethink this...
The contact you once craved can now be a source of stress. That cute little habit that you adored now makes you want to scream. So how to keep your friendships/romantic relationships/family flowing when all you want is some space? Read the tips below!
Carve out a specific space to do work. This can be for students at home now taking online classes or anyone working from home (that folding table is now the least comfortable desk you've ever worked at). This will create a clear boundary between work and relaxing activities.
Make the space as comfortable as you can - you're going to be spending a lot of time there. Also limiting visual distractions enhances productivity.
Take some alone time. This is tough in a small space, but you can go into another room for a few minutes, put on some headphones to zone out to your favorite music, read a book or watch TV. If it's safe/advisable, go out for a socially distant walk. As much as we need interconnectedness, we need solitary time too.
Engage in open communication. Don't pick on every single thing that annoys you (there will be many!) but do not allow frustrations to build up to a point where it bubbles up uncontrollably. Express your concerns in a compassionate, empathetic way.
Have an agreed upon strategy to allow for some cooling down time if someone does get overwhelmed or frustrated. Come back to the situation later rather than allowing it to continuously escalate. Often times we need to allow our emotions to settle before we can have a constructive conversation.
Try to be understanding and see things from the other person's perspective. You are probably not the only person who is irritable or uncomfortable at times (even though it may feel like it!) Recognizing that we're all in this together will help us get through this together.
Conflict is not always negative. Use this time to learn more about each other and to grow and strengthen relationships. If you're struggling, we can help facilitate effective communication - we have experts in couples counseling and stress management. Please don't hesitate to reach out to us.