Dealing With A Critical Spouse

Studio 5 Relationship Coach Matt Townsend explains how to deal the criticism.

There’s a quick test to see how much criticism you’re enduring.

Do you feel your spouse criticizes you unfairly?

Do you feel your spouse constantly looks for nitpicky things to criticize?

Do you feel your spouse routinely criticizes you for things that have been blown out of proportion or are beyond your control?

If you answered yes to anyone of those three questions, you may be living with a spouse who finds it easier to find fault than to praise.

1. Don’t React to the Criticism!

o Avoid getting too sucked into it.

o Let the initial wave of emotion go over you.

o Plan ahead…if you know that you live with critical people create a plan for how you will handle them before you need to handle them.

o Don’t React!

1. Reacting gives away your power and makes you more like them.

2. Find your happy place.

3. Create some space.

• Pause…and get in your higher brain.

4. Don’t retaliate

o Smile

1. Keep an open mind.

o Don’t escalate.

o Create some space.

2. Choose a Healthier Way to See it.

o The most powerful person is communication is the receiver not the speaker.

o Evaluate both the messenger and the message.

o Messenger-

1. Remember that criticizing you is more about them than you.

2. There is a “good” reason they are always complaining.

3. Don’t believe the critically challenged.

4. Don’t argue with the critically challenged.

5. Don’t let them lead your self esteem.

6. Respecting Question… “Why would a loving, decent, caring, incredible partner give you feedback you didn’t ask for?”

o Message-

1. Remember that they are opinions not facts.

2. Don’t take their opinions personally.

3. Find the truth and thank them for their feedback.

• Ask yourself what are they saying that is true?

3. Focus on what you can change and let go of what you can’t.

o Remember you do have a lot of power.

o You can:

1. Be Positive even if they’re not.

2. Not let it bother you.

3. Share with them how you’d rather be talked to.

4. Go get help!

5. Choose to not be a victim of your partner.

6. Laugh off their ignorance.

7. Choose to be highly effective.

8. Choose how you will move forward.

9. Tell them how it made you feel.

10. Write a letter if it helps.

Matt is getting ready for another Date Night. It will be held on Saturday, April 18 in Sandy. Admission is free, but you must have a reservation. You can do so by calling (801) 747-2121 or by visiting

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