DEALING WITH CONFLICT
In an ideal world, we would all get along. But, we are all human, meaning we all have different opinions, experiences, and feelings. While oftentimes we are able to see someone else’s point of view logically and respectfully, there are times where things might heat up. But, that doesn’t have to end friendships or marriages! Today we’ll be sharing some tips for dealing with conflict with grace, compassion, and understanding.
ARGUING FOR ARGUMENT’S SAKE
When it comes to conflict, it’s important to make sure that you aren’t just arguing for fun. That is unproductive and could cause issues in your relationship later on. The reasons for arguments and discussions are to resolve disagreements, or to persuade someone to your side of things, not just to have fun. While a good discussion every once in a while is healthy and productive, constantly trying to find ways to argue with someone can leave them feeling stressed and not wanting to talk to you. Think of a teenager constantly arguing with their parents, for example. Oftentimes, they’re only doing it to be troublesome. It does little to strengthen their bond and oftentimes just causes feelings of resentment!
USING RESPECTFUL LANGUAGE
If you are struggling with conflict, and it seems unavoidable, it’s important to bring it up in a respectful way. Things like name calling or insults have no place in healthy conflict resolution. Let’s look at some examples.
“Of course you forgot to empty the dishwasher again, you’re so stupid.”
This sentence immediately comes off as an attack. While it’s understandable and valid to be frustrated when someone forgets to help out, it’s never okay to attack them for it. This will automatically make them feel defensive. Most likely, they will start to attack back. Instead, try something like this:
“It frustrates me when you forget to empty the dishwasher. How can I help you remember so we’re all pulling our own weight?”
This is a much better option, as it still conveys your frustration, but in a much more respectful and helpful way. Remember, when dealing with conflict, there is never a place for disrespect or hateful language.
THE PROBLEM VS THE PERSON
When trying to deal with conflict, remember, you are working to find a resolution to a problem, not attacking the person. Regardless of whose fault it may be, your goal when dealing with conflict is always to resolve a problem, not a person. By separating the conflict from the person, it’s a lot easier to find a solution, instead of getting back at someone you think might have hurt you. It also does a lot less damage on your relationship with this person in the long run, which is always the goal.
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