6 Steps to Resolving Marital Conflict

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This is a guest post by Lawrence Namale. More about Lawrence at the end of the post.

Marriage is not the design of men, but the wisdom, pleasure, design and plan of the Almighty.

Many young men and women dream of the day they will finally get married and ‘enjoy’ life with one another, exclusively.

But once they get married they quickly discover that marriage is a little bit more complex than they had initially imagined: it’s not exactly smooth and trouble free.

Yet marital challenges are inevitable in any marriage.

It’s how we resolve them that matters.

6 steps to resolving marital conflict
Today, I want to share six points on masterminding relational challenges in marriage.

I have written an eBook titled “21 Commandments to Mastermind your Comeback” and today’s lessons are derived from that eBook. (More details on how you can get a free copy of this eBook at the end of the post)

1. Resolve Early.

Conflict in marriage brings out several things from the couple:

– Their most cherished positions on matters.

– Their individual thoughts about each other.

– The silent cry for an awesome relationship.

– The raw individual personalities.

– Assessment whether one is loved or not (especially for wives)

It’s important to resolve issues at the earliest opportunity.

When matters linger for a day or week or a month, issues will escalate because of the compounding of the five things mentioned above.

When left to simmer, you begin to deal with the ‘misinterpretations’ of the real conflict.

You find yourselves dealing with illusions instead of issues.

Many couples are adrift today largely because of these misinterpretations and illusions.

So when a conflict arises, resolve it at the earliest opportunity.

And for this to be done, you have to die to the flesh: don’t wait for ‘supporting’ emotions before you resolve.

That being said, be wise with the timing for resolution.

The best time to resolve is not when he is hot tempered and she’s crying. Let’s calm down first and then resolve.

2. Reconnect

Isolation is a dangerous thing.

Yes, we do need some solitary time every now and then but going off by ourselves when the relationship is in trouble is not a good thing.

Ask yourself ; who is my most trusted friend?

I am talking about a common friend who respects the both of you and will not take sides.

It might be a mentor, a pastor, an elderly couple or a counselor.

For us men, we are so macho we think it is weakness to talk to a counselor about issues in our marriage.

But that’s pride. And pride stinks!

When facing conflict that needs outside intervention, it is important to re-connect with one of these people and just talk.

Let your spouse know that you reached out to so and so and let them know exactly what you told them.

Do not allow yourself to churn out illusionary thoughts which only lead to implosion.

6 Steps to resolving conflict in marriage

3. Review before deciding

While the conflict is still ongoing, we tend to think up all manner of negative thoughts about our spouses and relationship.

Do not decide your next step using only the input of the current crisis.

Don’t take drastic steps in the heat of the moment.

Take some time to ‘cool off’ before making permanent decisions.

Even God does this. He told Moses to step aside so he could obliterate the stiff necked Israelites…but Moses interceded for them…but I digress.

4. Re-evaluate

Without roots, a tree cannot bear fruits.

All marital issues have roots.

Sometimes, these ‘roots’ are something we cherish as individuals.

What I am saying is that the cause of your conflict could be something ‘good’ that must be uprooted.

If for example, your spouse is wary of a certain friendship that you have, and they have good reasons for their feeling, you might need to make adjustments as far as that friendship is concerned.

What is important to you?

Your spouse or that friendship? Your marriage or the football/basketball/baseball team?

What ‘painful’ adjustments can you make to enhance your marital bliss?

The measure of your love to your spouse could be the degree you are willing to prioritize her over personal recreational agendas.

5. Re-Focus

Marital conflict can localize our attention on the pain and setback to the extent that we miss the bigger picture.

The naïve will say they never imagined they’d ever have a misunderstanding in marriage.

But really when there’s misunderstanding in marriage, it doesn’t mean all is lost.

It is OK to have misunderstandings.

Let me re-phrase that. It is only human to have misunderstandings.

I am not saying that we should rejoice when a misunderstanding shows up to celebrate our humanity.

I am saying that we should not think we are beyond hope because we have a misunderstanding.

The most important thing is reach out for your marital dreams and allow them re-focus as you work out the conflict.

Don’t think your marriage will never be successful just because of one setback.

6 steps to resolving marital conflict

6. Reach out For Your Dreams

Folks, there is no better time to reach out for your marital dreams than when you face a crisis or a conflict.

Sadly, many people look for the exit door at the first sign of trouble.

Yet conflict can be the wake up call we need to point us to the important things.

It should not be an undertaker of our marital bliss.

Every time you have a marital setback, you need to think again about your ideal marriage – how you desire your marriage to be.

As you do, you will begin to see exactly how you have deviated from your goal (with the input of this conflict).

And you will be at a better place to not only resolve the conflict, but also implement certain things that will draw you closer to your marital bliss.

Question: How do you resolve conflict in your marriage? Do you use any of these tips I’ve shared? Please share your wisdom in Comments below

About Author: Lawrence Namale is Lifecoach, speaker, husband and dad. You can get a free copy of his eBook “21 Commandments to Mastermind your Comeback” when you subscribe to his blog.


  1. Lily Thompson says:

    Great tips, Lawrence. I absolutely agree that it is crucial to find resolution as early as possible. While it is unrealistic to expect any marriage to be 100% conflict-free, it is also important to know when a conflict is destructive to the bond and when it helps find a solution that actually helps the relationship. This is why it is always crucial to focus on the patterns or arguments, as well as the communication. And, never hesitate to visit a marriage therapist because strengthening the marital bond is the key objective.

  2. Reignite the spark that brought you together, end arguments, and live a happy and fulfilling family life with the person you truly love…

  3. Through the years I have broken all five of those points more then once and yet we stayed married. On the other side of the coin we have used all the points to make up too. Does conflict happen after almost 50 years of marriage…for sure. In fact my husband and I are still two different personalities, still have two different ways of approaching a problem even after being married so long. Giving each other room to fail or to be different is huge in our marriage. Ace learned to prefer me and I have learn to submit and those two are why we are still married. It is Christ that holds us together as one for His glory and our good. Our marriage is a work in progress all the time being helped by reading and action upon what you wrote about. Good post brother.

    1. Lawrence Namale says:

      Betty…such refreshing thoughts. That conflicts will occur in marriage does not translate to the marriage being ‘not of God’…and indeed it is Christ in Us the hope of glory that gives us the strength and the wisdom to resolve. Thanks for your comments.

  4. #3 is powerful and one I’m working on. Taking time to cool off, to not let the moment dictate my actions/words. I must evaluate all aspects of our marriage, not just the current moment. That really helps cool me off and soften my heart.

    1. Lawrence Namale says:

      Right on TCAvey. Without the cooling off, sometimes we regret later on our reactions that deepen the problem that would have otherwise taken a pause or solved if we took time before deciding. Thanks for reading. Regards to your spouse.

  5. Nice job. The golden rule of Christ is a good place to start for me. Trying to imagine someone else’s path and feelings is hard if we’re feeding our pride and insecurities. Good word! Thanks.

    1. Lawrence Namale says:

      Glad to have you chip in Floyd…and you are spot on with the Golden rule. Thanks for the kind words, we are glad you are reading.

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