By Dr. Amy Osmond Cook

Katy Perry has a new look, and her new attitude is the cherry on top. Between her sassy new song dissing Taylor Swift and her poorly reviewed album that just came out, Katy Perry has taken some heat in the past few weeks. Say what you will about Katy Perry, Taylor Swift, and any of the other celebrities caught up in the drama relationship problems, *cough Nicki Minaj cough;* but there are a few notes we can take to apply in our lives about being petty. Think about these four key pieces of relationship advice before you take any rash actions against your significant others, especially when it comes to breakups.

Relationship advice that will help you be the bigger person.


1. Put your phone away: Your first instinct may be to tweet or text your way through frustration, but this can blow any situation out of proportion. Whether it’s your boyfriend or your best friend, putting your problems out on social media in the heat of the moment can lead you to say things you’ll regret. Just think of all the celebrity Twitter drama that could have been avoided had these celebs given things some time to blow over. Try to keep things between the people involved until you feel like you have a handle on the situation.

2. Take some time: Similar to the phone tip, take a few hours or days to think about things before making any decisions. You might be contemplating a breakup or deciding on whether it’s time to meet the family; give yourself time with your thoughts. “Respect is earned simply by giving it,” relationship expert Toni Coleman says, “And, if you are disrespectful, this is what will come back to you.” Even if someone betrays your trust or says something rude, taking the time to evaluate the situation will help you decide what the best way to handle it.

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3. Consider their perspective: Have you ever heard the phrase, “Broken hearts break hearts?” Well, sometimes it’s true. Maybe your heart was recently broken. Maybe your boyfriend said the wrong thing at the wrong time. Maybe your crush bailed on plans. Emotions are natural, but when thinking about their situation, feelings, and intention, you can gain a little perspective of your own. “When you act without regard to how your behavior will impact your partner and relationship, you are sending a very clear signal that their feelings and needs are not a priority,” Coleman says. If they need some time to sort through personal hardships or just don’t feel the connection like they once did, hearing them out and giving them the benefit of the doubt can be very healing. However, this isn’t an excuse to justify actions that are disrespectful, manipulative, or unkind.

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4. Talk to a friend:If you’ve taken the time cool off, now might be the perfect time to talk to a friend. He or she can give you a different outlook on the situation, be a safe person to vent to, and help you avoid making any rash decisions. Your friends might know you better than you know yourself, and they can be a source of honesty when you’re looking for advice. Confide in someone you trust. Ask them what they see in the relationship.

5. Change your look: If all else fails and you feel the need for a little control in your life, follow Katy Perry’s lead and freshen up your look. I’m not saying chop all your hair off, but trying a new style out or adding some color to your wardrobe can give you an extra boost of confidence.

Being petty hardly ever pays off. Try these tips to deal with the rough patches in the varied relationships of your life, so you’re more likely to keep your dignity, have fewer regrets, and avoid burning bridges.

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