Our family is our world and our small state. Our Constitution is the main rule of our state. Our rules are not directed against anyone, but in the name of protecting the interests of each family member. They protect everyone and benefit everyone.
Family is work. And since this is our favorite work, we treat it with soul, joy and responsibility. If we are fully adequate at work, we can be the same in the family. When we need to remind this, we say: “Work format!”, After which we look after ourselves as if at work. If we do not understand how to solve a difficult issue, we recall how such issues are resolved in the treasury of common sense – in a reasonable business.
Everything that happens in the family is divided into three territories: my personal territory, your personal territory and our common territory. With a natural consequence: on my territory I am the master, on yours you, on the common territory we are obliged to agree on all issues.
At the same time, my territory is mine and self-service. Personal territory is a part of life that you are responsible for and with which you manage, without straining other family members more than what you agreed on. On their personal territory, each person takes the responsibility to solve all their problems independently. As far as your decisions and your life begin to unduly strain other family members, so all this ceases to be your personal territory and becomes a common territory.
If a child has a hamster and his parents have to clean it, the fate of the hamster is no longer decided by the child, but by all members of the family. If the husband begins to drink in his personal time, this is already the case with the wife, and the question becomes – common. If a wife began to lead a lifestyle from which she loses her physical attractiveness, the question of her nutrition and how much she lays down also becomes a general question.
Family decision making is governed by rules. The first question for the right decisions is: “Whose question is this? Whose territory is this?” If this is my territory – I decide the question. Your territory is your decision.
What to eat for the husband – the husband decides, and what is in the purse of the wife – the husband does not concern. This is her territory! But where we will go to rest, the question is common, here we need to agree. What will be your territory in our family, what is mine, what is our common territory, you also need to agree, but as soon as you decide on this, the bulk of the disagreement goes away, it becomes surprisingly easy to resolve issues.
If the question is common, then on a common territory not a single question can be resolved alone: we solve common issues together.
As for the children, they participate in the discussion in proportion to their contribution to the family and the ability to lead the discussion reasonably. If this is not enough, they obey adults, and do not command them their desires.
Whatever feelings anyone has, the discussion goes by the rules, and the first rule is: “We don’t make noise, we sort everything out calmly and in order. One question is for one discussion.” Until the issue is resolved, no other issues are discussed.
If you need to raise a new question, warn your partner about it and decide: you close the previous question (on what?) Or postpone (for how long?).
Everything is always discussed on a common territory, not a single topic can be closed as painful. However, we simply do not raise difficult, unpleasant and painful topics, by the way. Reproaches and accusations are prohibited. We raise sensitive issues only in the case and only for a constructive discussion.
Anyone who has noticed a source of danger in a discussion (a dangerous topic, problematic intonations, bad timing or surroundings) and has carefully warned the other side about it deserves gratitude. Anyone who then insisted on continuing the discussion is fully responsible for the subsequent problems.
If the head of the family did not close a dangerous topic and its discussion resulted in a quarrel, only the head of the family is to blame for the quarrel. If the head of the family is not obeyed, the issue of responsibility is dealt with separately.
How is the discussion going?
All issues are resolved only calmly, only with reasonable argumentation and without emotional pressure. Therefore:
We follow the intonations: we speak calmly, gently and thoughtfully. We each express our vision, listen to each other and look for options for the best solution for both of us. Do not push, but think. If someone got carried away, started to push, speak sharply, harshly, categorically – it’s more correct to stop and correct the situation (ask: “Speak softer, please!”), But do not continue the discussion in this style.
We look at the situation neutrally, from the side. It’s easier to agree, if we’re talking about positions not “my position” and “your position” (“I want” – “you want”), but use neutral wording “Position No. 1” and “Position No. 2”. Just different views, no matter whose, and we analyze their pros and cons. And even better, if there are not two, but three or more positions, then it will be easier to choose the optimal solution.