Often we want to avoid conflict. It his hard, it can be emotional, it may bring up topics that we are not wanting or ready to face. And yet it can lead to deep transformation of partnerships, relationships, and groups for it pushes us to truly get to the root of issues, face deeply held emotions, and truly move through to build harmony.
How do you face conflict if you typically want to avoid it? It takes practice, shifting a habit which is ingrained can take time. First notice that you are avoiding the conflict and notice how that is impacting your relationships, your interactions, your ability to course correct if things are not going properly. In fact it dealing with the conflict and/or the emotion that you are avoiding will move you through to letting it go, bringing forth what is honest and true for you, and no longer take things so sensitively. There may be misinterpretations and/or lack of understanding which if talked about can be resolved.
The second step is to begin to lean into bringing up issues and discussing them in a non-emotional way. It is through honest communications that both parties can feel safe and authentic and truly discuss an issue that may have arisen. If both parties are invested in the relationship they will want to work through it. Third, keep doing it. The more you practice and work through issues the stronger the foundation of the relationship becomes. It creates trust, authenticity, and the value of communications is given its true test.
Lean in and speak your truth in a way that the other person can hear (e.g. - in a kind, open, and centered way). Then true communications can develop. What can you do to begin to stop avoiding conflict?
Monica Thakrar has over 18 years experience in business focused mainly on strategy, change management, leadership development, training and coaching resulting in successful implementations of large scale transformation programs.