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Resolving Conflict


If you are out of touch with your feelings or so stressed that you can only pay attention to a limited number of emotions, you won’t be able to understand your own needs.

If you don’t understand your deep-seated needs, you will have a hard time communicating with others and staying in touch with what is really troubling you. For example, couples often argue about petty differences—the way she hangs the towels, the way he parts his hair—rather than what is really bothering them.

In personal relationships, a lack of understanding about differing needs can result in distance, arguments, and breakups. In workplace conflicts, differing needs are often at the heart of bitter disputes. When you can recognize the legitimacy of conflicting needs and become willing to examine them in an environment of compassionate understanding, it opens pathways to creative problem solving, team building, and improved relationships. When you resolve conflict and disagreement quickly and painlessly, mutual trust will flourish.

Successful conflict resolution depends on your ability to:

· Manage stress while remaining alert and calm. By staying calm, you can accurately read and interpret verbal and nonverbal communication.

· Control your emotions and behavior. When you’re in control of your emotions, you can communicate your needs without threatening, frightening, or punishing others.

· Pay attention to the feelings being expressed as well as the spoken words of others.

· Be aware of and respectful of differences. By avoiding disrespectful words and actions, you can resolve the problem faster.

Healthy and unhealthy ways of managing and resolving conflict

Conflict triggers strong emotions and can lead to hurt feelings, disappointment, and discomfort. When handled in an unhealthy manner, it can cause irreparable rifts, resentments, and breakups. But when conflict is resolved in a healthy way, it increases our understanding of one another, builds trust, and strengthens our relationship bonds.

Unhealthy responses to conflict are characterized by:

· An inability to recognize and respond to matters of great importance to the other person

· Explosive, angry, hurtful, and resentful reactions

· The withdrawal of love, resulting in rejection, isolation, shaming, and fear of abandonment

· The expectation of bad outcomes

· The fear and avoidance of conflict

Healthy responses to conflict are characterized by:

· The capacity to recognize and respond to important matters

· A readiness to forgive and forget

· The ability to seek compromise and avoid punishing

· A belief that resolution can support the interests and needs of both parties

Resolving Conflict


Aaron Karmin


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APA Reference
Karmin, A. (2020). Resolving Conflict. Psych Central. Retrieved on August 4, 2020, from https://blogs.psychcentral.com/anger/2020/07/resolving-conflict/

 

Last updated: 22 Jul 2020
Statement of review: Psych Central does not review the content that appears in our blog network (blogs.psychcentral.com) prior to publication. All opinions expressed herein are exclusively those of the author alone, and do not reflect the views of the editorial staff or management of Psych Central. Published on PsychCentral.com. All rights reserved.