Let’s discuss some ways to approach conflict that will help you navigate it smoothly and use it to create even stronger relationships!
- Know what you really value. It will be over these important things that you will want to express conflict. All the other stuff is not worth it.
- Pick your battles and save your strength. Not all battles are yours to fight, so spend your energy on important conflicts. And remember, just because someone else wants to fight doesn’t mean you have to.
- Face your fear and stand your ground. Don’t ever walk away from a conflict when it involves what you value.
- Conflict is not a contest to be won. Jerry Jampolsky says “Would you rather be right or happy?” This one is an easy one for me. Happy wins every time!
- Listen; really listen, during time of conflict. In my experience, most conflicts are really misunderstandings. If you hang in there and listen, you will most likely find common ground instead of fighting words.
- Focus on behavior not on motives or intentions. If you can see it, you can name it, and you have half a chance of being listened to. Therefore, as much as possible, keep conflicts focused on what is tangible.
- Nothing new was ever created without conflict. Think about it, it is a conflict in needs vs. haves that creates a new product. A conflict in thought generates a new idea. A conflict between people creates an innovative idea. Now what was it about conflict you didn’t like?
- People don’t care what you know, until they know that you care. Yes, I know I have already shared this with you, but it is especially important to remember this in times of conflict. As long as people know you care, they will hang in there through the conflict to come out on the other side of it. So, especially in times of conflict, let your partner know you care.