Ill do it different next time…

As we face conflicts we have choices; our fight or flight instincts kick in and we will choose either to turn and run, or face the conflict head on. Running may look like saying, “everything is fine” when in fact the pain of the conflict gnaws in us like a festering splinter under our nail. Divorce, quitting a job, or ending a friendship also looks like running and it is at this point that we must answer the question, what will I do differently next time to avoid having to repeat these actions?

It saddens me knowing that we feel ending a relationship or changing jobs will change how we deal with conflict in the future, at the very least it will help us become suspicious and guarded so that relationships are not allowed to form.

Does it make sense to live in a 7 year cycle? Rebooting areas of our life because we are not equipped to make conflict an opportunity for growth?  It doesn’t seem to be healthy, yet many of us chose that over doing what it takes to work through conflicts.

Today, a fellow mediator and mentor (from afar) John Potter, a professor at SMU, shared this article about how a truce was built between two gangs. Carlos Tiberio Valladares, one of the gang members said, “We said we have to talk because things are getting out of hand.” If two gangs who resolve conflict by killing, can find an opportunity for growth through talk, I think the rest of us can certainly muster a little something to work things out in our relationships. Otherwise, you can be assured that you will reboot only to relive the same painful conflict you left years earlier. see full story here: <http://nyti.ms/Pk3Nji>

Here’s the challenge, decide to talk instead of walk! Make the decision, today, to use conflict as an opportunity to grow your marriage, friendship, or professional position. I will spend the next few posts focusing on how to do this successfully.

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