At that time, it becomes our duty to help our partners see how they might improve as people. They require our correction of their errors. We anticipate that they will be appreciative of our immense wisdom. When we are in a bad relationship, we tend to blame our partners for our own moodiness and disappointment by concentrating on our own irritation and disappointment. Avoid bringing up problems in a way that can be summed up as “I’m the long-suffering victim here, and everything would be wonderful if you just get your act together and do exactly as I tell you.” Pay attention to the issue, not the person. Be kind as well. Anxiety causes your heart to race, your cortisol and adrenaline to spike, and these uncontrollably negative effects cascade into one another. You struggle with problem solving, empathy, and listening. According to Gottman, it is “diffuse physiological arousal.” Have you ever been into a furious dispute only to discover it’s pointless? According to Gottman, it is hard to have a productive, compassionate conversation once stress chemicals are flooding the bloodstream at breakneck speed. It turns out that adults can also gain from taking a time-out. Your body cannot be made to “insist” on relaxing. Yes, it seems apparent. But this is a potent insight based on actual data, not just a corny little cliche. A ratio of five compliments to every criticism is what you want.