The XYZ Formula – Drs Les and Leslie Parrott

In this You Tube video, relationship experts Drs Les and Leslie Parrott explain something they call the XYZ Formula. It’s one that they often give to couples who need help. When you use it, it can transform a fight you are having with your spouse. It goes something like this: “In situation “X”, when you do “Y” I feel “Z.” And as Les and Leslie Parrott it’s a way to help your spouse feel that they are not being criticized. It creates, “a softer onset” to the whole approach. You have a tendency to react more negatively to a criticism, rather than a complaint.

The XYZ Formula

In a related article titled, Extended Conflict: 5 Tips for Overcoming Conflict they say: “It’s a great way to avoid criticizing your spouse and having to deal with hurt feelings in addition to the conflict or disagreement you’re already working to resolve.” It helps you to practice and extend empathy. “Empathy is the capacity to put yourself in your spouse’s shoes. This is SO crucial in marriage.” It also helps you to “work toward closure.” This will help you to deal with unresolved emotions. These emotions need certain attention so you can move on.

This method includes rating the depth of your conflict in a way both of you can understand. It also helps you to “work toward closure.” This will help you to deal with unresolved emotions that need attention so you can move on.

We highly recommend that you watch the video a few times. They clarify this point better than we can do here. Afterward go to the article (the link is given above) to read a bit more on it. They even offer a download to a FREE Conflict Card. This will give you an “easy way to rate the depth of your disagreement.” This can help you to better understand this formula, and put it to use within your marriage. It’s sure worth a try!

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2 responses to “The XYZ Formula – Drs Les and Leslie Parrott

  1. I am a counselor in Texas and use Andy’s Mr/Mrs Mug video to help my couples in conflict visualize what happens in a contemptuous conflict. I also use a mug full of water and ask the couples to hold it and then notice how difficult it is not to spill it. Visualization is a good technique in psychotherapy. Any other ideas?

    1. Thank you Michael for this added insight. It’s good to know better how to use this visual tool. Thanks for sharing. I pray God blesses your counseling ministry. It is so needed!