Keep things in perspective. And most things are not really a big deal. It’s just that you prefer it be differently. You can say, “It’s not a big deal but I just want you to know about it.”
- “It’s not a big deal, but it would make me so much happier if you hung up your coat in the closet rather than on the back of the chair.”
- “This is not a big deal but I want you to know that when you said [that], I felt [feeling]. I prefer that you word it this way [wording], it would make me less anxious.”
What is powerful about the words ‘it’s not a big deal’ is that you are not criticizing or saying anything about their character, and thus they will be less likely to get defensive. It is also implying that the relationship is safe and they don’t have to become anxious. Lastly, you are stating your preference or helping them learn something about you in a non-confrontational way.
The key is to say the words “It’s not a big deal” in the beginning of the statement. This relaxes the tone as the other person listens to what you are bringing up.