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From the Fall
How can people who might be tempted to turn to violence find
alternative ways to deal with their problems? Since violence is a choice,
the Time Out process offers a structured way to choose an alternative.
Time Out is not the solution but rather a way to avoid violence while entering
into a long-term process of getting to the root of the problem.
when you are no longer engaged in constructive arguing.
body signs -- headache, pounding heart, sweating palms, tense jaws, clenched
hands, inability to listen, and racing thoughts.
"self-talk" -- telling yourself negative things about yourself, your partner, or
the situation only escalates anger. Name-calling, cursing, and commands
such as "get off my back," "I told you to shut up," are verbal signs of
Take Time Out
partner you are taking a time out.
The time out
procedure must be discussed and practiced prior to its use, so your partner
knows what you are doing and for how long.
second-guess your decision. Do not get in the last word. Simply say,
"I am taking a time out."
Leave for an Hour
hour - don't drink, don't drive, don't take drugs.
physical: running, walking, bicycling, etc. Do not hit pillows or punching
bags as they can be a rehearsal of acting out violence.
Get in touch
with your feelings using "I" statements: "I feel hurt."
consider your partner's point of view.
relaxation techniques: deep breathing, positive "self-talk" like "I'm taking
responsibility for myself."
Check Back In
partner, "Is now a good time to talk?"
you felt angry.
resolve the conflict. If the discussion gets hot again, take another time
out. If you cannot resolve the conflict, table it for another time.
Look for a
win/win solution: the resolution must be acceptable to both parties for it to