There are 4 Stress Response Patterns: Fight, Flight, Freeze, Fawn

Your Relationship Roadblock Pattern Type is:

Out of Here Helen (Flight Response)

Helen’s motto? ‘Be prepared.’ At the first sign of conflict, her go-to default is to open Zillow and start shopping for a place to live.

Independent and self-sufficient, Helen doesn’t wait around to be rescued. She’s proactive, always strategizing, even rehearsing conversations to smooth out wrinkles in her marriage.

But despite her efforts, the pattern repeats—arguments leading to emotional stalemates.

Helen has yet to learn how to communicate with him in a way that gets him to finally hear her without reacting and getting defensive.  When she does, the cycle of arguing will be broken and peace will be restored.

If change doesn’t come, Helen’s readiness to fly away might sadly become her reality when it is totally unnecessary.

 

The Flight Response has both Strengths and Weaknesses

Strengths:

Self-reliance: Exhibits independence and confidence in her ability to manage alone.

Proactive: Takes initiative in seeking solutions and planning ahead.

Adaptive: Flexible and capable of adjusting to new situations rapidly.

 

Weaknesses:

Avoidance: Tendency to escape rather than face and resolve conflicts.

Emotional Distance: May struggle with deep emotional engagement in the relationship.

Impulsivity: Quick decisions to leave can prevent meaningful resolution.

 

ACTION PLAN

 

The “flight response” is part of our body’s natural reaction to perceived threats, known as the “fight-or-flight” response. This instinctive mechanism is rooted in our evolutionary history, where survival often depended on reacting quickly to danger. In modern times, the fight response can be triggered in stressful or confrontational situations, not just physical danger.

Understand Your Flight Response: It’s important to recognize when you’re beginning to feel the urge to ‘flight’ or withdraw. Being aware of this response and what triggers it is the first step in managing it.

Practice Mindfulness: Mindfulness techniques like our Chaos to Calm or Resourcing meditations can help you stay grounded in the present moment, making it easier to face stressful situations rather than avoiding them.

Practice 5-5-7 Deep Breathing: When you feel overwhelmed, try taking 3 slow, deep breaths. Breathing in through your nose for 5 seconds, hold for 5 seconds and exhale out your mouth for 7 seconds. This can calm your nervous system and help you think more clearly.

Reflect on the Reasons for Avoidance: Think about why you feel like withdrawing. Is it fear of conflict, fear of not being heard, or something else? Understanding this can help you address the underlying concerns. And if you are unsure then using a tool like our Conflict Resolution Guide can help you communicate more effectively, express your needs and boundaries, and find common ground with your partner.

Set Small, Achievable Goals: Start by facing smaller challenges and gradually work your way up. This can help build confidence in your ability to handle difficult situations.

 

BREAKING YOUR PATTERN

Here’s the deal, sis! If you just walk away from a conflict, you’re not really making progress toward resolving it. Instead, take a moment to tune into your emotions. If you’re feeling frustrated and don’t want to lose your cool, it’s perfectly okay to tell your partner that you need a breather before stepping away.

Remember, it’s all about identifying and communicating what’s going on inside you – that’s the secret sauce for working through conflicts.

For more on how to break this pattern and better communication with your partner I invite you to check out Relationship Restoration Accelerator.

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