Relationships in life can be complicated, whether it’s your partner, a family member, a good friend, or a co-worker, etc., it is important to develop the proper tactics to resolve any sort of conflict that may arise in that relationship. In order to be happy, communication skills are important. Communication skills will help you in resolving conflict, whether it is verbal communication or even body language. It is inevitable that we will find ourselves in conflict with other people, so it is important for us to know how to handle it when it arises. It is important to remember that conflict isn’t always a bad thing, sometimes conflicts can be productive in a relationship, and lead to growth; whether that growth is between us and the other person or just within ourselves.
Typically, you will find that your conflict is constructive if it results in the following:
- Solving a problem
- Seeing things from the other person’s point of view
- Realizing you are wrong and being able to admit it and fix it
- Gaining a better understanding of the other person
- Gaining knowledge on how to better solve other conflicts in the future
- Developing trust or mutual respect for the other person
On the other hand, if the conflict is unproductive, or not constructively resolved, it can lead to resentment, distrust, anger, etc., that can lead to other unhealthy relationship issues or tendencies in the future. Let’s talk about a few tips on how you can deal with conflict more constructively:
#1 Take a minute to calm down
Have you ever been extremely angry or frustrated in a situation and later realized that you overreacted or feel differently than you did in that moment? Giving yourself a minute to calm down can be very beneficial in a conflict. Take a minute, and take a deep breath before letting your emotions get the best of you.
#2 Truly try to be open-minded
It is so important to see things from the other person’s side. Practicing empathy can help you to better understand why the other person acted or is acting the way they are. This can really help when you are trying to come to a compromise or understanding.
#3 Try to not let your emotions overcome your rationality
Sometimes you need to try and see things from an outsider’s perspective. When we are directly and emotionally involved in a conflict, sometimes those emotions can overthrow our better judgment and rationality.
#4 Try to not focus on accusing the other person of things
Jumping to conclusions or accusations can result in tempers getting out of control. Try to speak to the other person as if you were speaking to yourself.
#5 Remember how important it is to listen
Listening is the only way you are going to be able to understand the other person’s side and practice empathy. Try to gain a holistic perspective of the situation by truly listening to the other person.
#6 Keep the conversation in present tense
It can be difficult to focus on the now when you conflict with someone. We tend to want to bring up all the negative things that person has done in the past. Don’t dwell on previous conflicts, this isn’t going to help either of you move forward.
#7 Be aware of your body language and non-verbal communication
Remember that your body language and non-verbal communication can say just as much as the words coming out of your mouth. Don’t send mixed signals.
#8 Take some responsibility
It is likely that the other person is not the only one at fault in the conflict, try to see where you may have been wrong, and take responsibility.
#9 Focus on what you can control in the situation
Remember that sometimes you are just not going to get what you want out of a conflict. Focus on the things that you can control (like yourself) and not on the things you can’t (the other person, the past, etc.).
#10 Remember to forgive
Forgiving the person will be just as beneficial to you, as it is to the other person, if not more.
If you are looking for help in conflict resolution in a relationship in your life, or even conflict within your own heart and mind, you may need to consider speaking to a professional. When it comes to conflict management in Carrolton, here at Lifeworks, one of our trusted, reliable, knowledgeable and caring counselors can help you resolve conflict more productively and feel at ease again. Contact our Carrolton therapy center today and let us help you feel happy and at peace again.