A lot of our conflicts are fueled by early childhood experiences, those internalized and unresolved memories that trigger anger and resentment and drastically influence the relationships we have as adults.
Before you can negotiate conflicts, you need to first understand what you bring to them.
- What triggers a conflict for you?
- What are you feeling and experiencing?
That requires honesty without making excuses. It is so easy to see ourselves as a victim and play the blame game. However, when you give up your responsibility, you also give up your personal power.
When I go through department stores, I am constantly on alert for that good bargain or unique pair of pants or top I might enjoy wearing.
If something grabs my attention, I hold it up in front of me in a nearby mirror to do a quick assessment. Does the color look good? Do I like the lines of the garment? What draws my attention to it from all the others on the rack?
If I still like it after a quick evaluation, I will try it on. Only after I have tried it on will I know whether it is right for me.
Problem solving works that way, too. When we choose an option we think will be the solution to our problem, we “try it on” to discover whether it is the right choice for us.
Read on for ideas about how to productively “try on” and assess solutions.
Most decisions we make are so insignificant we rarely think about them, such as, “What will I wear to work today?” or “What shall I plan for dinner?” But other decisions are more complicated, demanding thoughtful consideration.
When symptoms keep us edgy and anxious, it may take a while to separate and identify the problem from the symptoms it is creating.
Today on my blog, we’ll take a deep dive into the importance of recognizing when a problem is a problem and clearly defining the conflict.
“That’s not what I said.”
“Yes, it is, I heard you.”
“You always try to pin the blame on me. If you were here instead of out golfing, this wouldn’t have happened.”
“Oh, and how about you – out shopping again….”
And round and round and round it goes, ending with two angry people who continue to find ways to attack, defend and destroy each other.
Many of the problems we face are interpersonal conflicts of some kind. They are usually laced with anger and blame and persistence that I am right, and you are wrong.
How do we get into these conflicts in the first place? And how do we get out of them?