Posts Tagged ‘conflict management

The next time you are in a conversation with someone; do not try to take the reigns. Be very mindful of this throughout the conversation and allow the other person to direct the way that the conversation goes. After the conversation is over and you find that the world is still spinning on its axis, you will realize that you do not need to have control over every conversation and situation.

When you look for control in all communication, you are essentially telling the other person that you have no respect for their feelings or opinions and those things will be best if you just remain in charge. This negative communication affects everyone in a poor manner. If you continue to converse in this manner, you will find that people will not want to converse with you unless they have to. Your company may be sought out at work – if you are the boss, but for the most part, you will not be a very effective leader. You will probably also suffer from problems with all relationships.


Everyone experiences stress at one time or another. It’s just that some of us handle it better than others. The trick to dealing with stress is to manage the stress instead of allowing it to manage you.

Why manage stress? Because when it gets out of control it can be one of the most destructive influences in your life. If you can learn to manage stress, you can then have the resemblance of some sort of control. While you are still going to experience stress in life and cannot get rid of all your stressors, if you learn how to recognize symptoms of stress and manage them, you can stay one step ahead of the game and be more effective at dealing with the conflict that occurs with stress.

Make no mistake about it – stress does cause conflict. But by managing stress, you can learn to alleviate some of the conflict that stress brings on.

1. Learn how to say “no” without apologizing. If someone is pressing you to do somethingthat you don’t want to do, it is okay to say “no.” If you say “yes” when you mean no, thenyou are going to end up disliking yourself and resenting the person to whom you said yes.

2. Learn not to criticize. Use more positive communication skills such as praise instead of criticism. Avoid the words “you never” and “you always” as they are detrimental.

3. Use “I” statements instead of “you” statements. Remember that no one can argue withyou about the way that you feel and that you are entitled to your own feelings.

4. Speak up for yourself. If something bothers you, do not hide it. Be free to discuss your feelings.

5. If you feel that you are acting too aggressive or too demanding, do not beat yourself over it. Just try to do better the next time.

You have probably heard the term “passive aggressive” and did not know what it meant. You are probably familiar with the terms passive and aggressive. These are three communication styles that should be eliminated if you are to communicate effectively with other individuals.

Aggressive communication can be described as follows:


-Using intimidation or threats

-Underlying violence

-Talking down to people in a disrespectful manner

-Being very controlling

-Saying rude and hurtful things to people under the guise of being “blunt”

-Name calling

-Offensive behavior

Do you exhibit any of these signs of aggressive behavior? If so, you probably have found that it has gotten you into quite a few fights, maybe even some physical altercations. You are a walking time bomb who always seems to be able to go off.

There is nothing wrong with being assertive in making sure that your needs are met. There is something wrong if you are hurting other people in your quest to do this.


People who exhibit aggressive style behavior are usually bullies. They often will resort to talking to people in this manner at stores and places where employees are trained not to talk back. It gives them a false sense of superiority and makes others feel bad. To say that this communication style is ineffective is an understatement. It is toxic. And sooner or later, it will cause negative effects in your life. No matter how much of a bully you are, and how aggressive, there is always someone who is a bit tougher. Continue this type of behavior and be prepared to have very few friends, move around from different jobs all of the time and have problems in your personal life as well as with the criminal justice system. have problems in your personal life as well as with the criminal justice system.


Passive behavior is almost as destructive as aggressive behavior. You never know what a passive person is thinking, but they are usually seething on the inside about something. Because they are so stifled in their emotional range, they will not let anything out for others to see. Somewhere in their lifetime, they were told that it was not okay to display any of their feelings nor have any value to their feelings. They simply allow people to walk all over them. When the passive person has had enough of the conflict, they will just take off.

You have heard about passive people before. Surely you know someone who knows someone who has had a father or mother just take off without explanation. Chances are that the conflict they were experiencing was developing for some time. But because they did not know how to address the conflict, it never came out. Until the day that they decided to take off and leave.

Passive behavior is destructive in that it does not allow someone to communicate their thoughts and feelings in an effective manner. In fact, it does not allow them to communicate their feelings at all. This is almost as alienating as being aggressive. People who are extremely passive usually have a very low self esteem and simply do not feel that their needs are worth fighting for. Until they get to the point where the conflict builds up and they just escape.


In many cases, a person who is very passive may not escape physically from the conflict, but in their own mind. They may appear distant to others. This is because they have found it more comforting to slip into a dream world where the conflict does not exist.

Passive Aggressive

A person who is passive aggressive has deep rooted anger issues but will not address them. Instead, they will act out in other manners that are destructive. They usually have a problem with being told what to do by authority figures and are generally very negative individuals. Being passive-aggressive is considered as having traits that are reflective of having a personality disorder. A person who has been diagnosed with a personality disorder needs a more than conflict coaching, although this is a step in the right direction.

Signs that someone is passive aggressive include:

-Harboring resentment and underlying seething;

-Communicating through indirect means – by using children, messengers or e-mails to

get their message to the individual who is causing the conflict;

-Negative self image and image of others around him or her;

-Angry all of the time but inability to express it appropriately. The person may resort to

hurting animals or other pets;

-Making snide remarks or giving backhanded compliments to people.

Someone who is passive aggressive can use a good dose of therapy to get to the root of his or her negative self image. Their negative self image does not only affect them, but others around them. Normally, someone who is passive aggressive learns this behavior in childhood. Chances are that there is a parent who also suffered with this issue.

If you have one of these communication styles, you will want to do something to overcome it and be able to communicate more effectively.

Avoid Using “Always” and “Never”.

Many people, when they are involved in a conflict with other people will accuse them of “always” doing something or “never” doing something. People rarely never or always do anything. We may have habits, but for the most part, people are pretty flexible. When you accuse someone of always doing something or never doing something you are automatically putting them on the defensive and are escalating the conflict. Use “I” instead of “You” in your conflict.Instead of being accusatory towards the other individual in the conflict why not tell them how the conflict is making you feel? The other person can argue with you if you tell them something about themselves.

If you can, as they say, head the conflict off at the pass, before it gets to be a huge problem, you are one step ahead of the game. In order to be able to do this, you have to understand how to learn the warning signs of conflict. Once you recognize the warning signs of conflict, then you will know how to be able to mitigate the factors that are resulting in the conflict.

Some of the early warning signs of a conflict are:

  • Behavior Changes
  • Lack of Communication
  • Lack of productivity in work or home

You may first notice behavior changes in another person that begin to escalate towards conflict.For example, if you work with another person with whom you have lunch every day and they suddenly stop having lunch with you, this can lead to conflict. The behavior changes are usually coupled with lack of communication. Both precipitate a conflict. The lack of communication, when coupled with behavior changes are bound to start a conflict. If this pattern continues, there will most likely be less productivity at work if this is occurring in a work environment. If at home, there may also be less productivity coupled with silent animosity. If you are an emotionally competent person, you will learn to exercise your communication skills to stop the conflict right in its tracks.

Empathy is when you put yourself in the shoes of someone else and imagine how they feel.
Apathy is when you feel nothing. Sympathy is when you feel sorry for someone. Empathy is
the strongest of these personality traits that we should all feel in our lifetime in most or all situations. Being able to empathize with others is one way to be able to truly build healthy
relationships and resolve conflicts.
If you can see the point of view of the other person, you have a better chance of resolving the
conflict to everyone’s advantage. If you can only see your own point of view, you will not only
have problem resolving conflicts, but with any sort of communication as well.

May 2018
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