Healthy Living Looks at Conflict Resolution.
It is a fact that conflicts will be inevitable in any relationship that you have – that includes your spouse, your children, your family, within your workplace and even your community. While certainly not pleasant, resolving disputes can be a very healthy practice. In tonight’s healthy living we explore some tips on how to better resolve conflicts in your life.
Marleni Cuellar reporting
One of the most common misconceptions about conflict is that it’s a fight. While within conflicts, there is certainly disagreement it does not automatically include fighting. Professional Counselor Aimee Jex explains.
Aimee Jex, Professional Counselor
“When we talk about conflict, when people don’t see eye to eye. Sometimes we can just let things happen and sometimes it gets escalated a little bit.”
Jex explains that conflict is expected because as individuals we all have different experiences, values, perspectives and opinions.
“We’re looking for people who have their own ideas their own thoughts. This is how we’re raised in a society to think for ourselves to be unique and to think what’s best for us to make our decisions. We teach little kids to do their chores not to just do it but to choose to do it because they have to be responsible so having your own ideas is just part of how we’re raised and so every so often I figure out this thing is done is done best in my way instead of my mom’s way so we have a difference of opinion there. Having a difference of opinion does not necessarily we need to escalate that difference of opinion. That is the key. Knowing how to ///solve our differences or our opinions and how to move forward with them. We can either decide that I’ll do it my way and you do it your way. We can decide to find a different way to do it. We can decide to combine our forces so there are many different options when we find out there is a difference of opinion.”
What are some important skills in conflict resolution? Each scenario will be resolved differently. r example, how you handle a conflict with an equal like your spouse or coworker will be different with how you approach a conflict between a parent and child or employer or supervisor and employee. However, there are some fundamental practices we can all adopt.
“In order to be successful in our communities is to be able to listen. TO be able to listen and then to take that information and combine it for ourselves in a way where we can understand what is happening and if we don’t have to reinvent the wheel if we can take ideas and make it work but in listening is one of the most important parts in communication; without listening communication can’t happen, without communication, conflict will exacerbate. When they are equals, when there is not favoritism, when there is not a difference of power we have the ability to speak our minds assertively. When it comes to parent/child the child will still or ought to still speak up but there will be a line that cannot be crossed. So when there is someone in a position of authority over the other person there is a line of respect that cannot be crossed. And that is another thing regarding when we talk about conflict; you have to respect the person you’re dealing with. When there is not a level of respect the situation can escalate very easily.”
As a part of her practice, Jex helps to guide person through conflict resolution but she insists that not everyone require professional intervention.
“We are a social people so we have a network. Go to the network. When your network is not enough for you or feel uncomfortable going to your network then you seek professional help. The thing is we are here to help you. Counselors, helpers are people who are going to listen and we’re not going to tell you things to start from zero or go outside you’re comfort zone. We are going to listen to you and help you to get what you need. Help you to be more assertive help you to listen a little bit better.”
One thing we should consider, according to Jex, is that not all conflicts require resolving.
“Sometimes we have to pick our battles. I think that’s the expression that we use all the time. Yes, we do have to know sometimes children have to do it, sometimes have parents have to do it, sometimes spouses have to do it, sometimes employees have to do it, sometimes employers have to do it. You have to know which battle is best for you. It’s not throwing in the towel. It’s just saying “I acknowledge your point; it is not my best opinion but let’s trey this one first; Tehran always the plan the plan that I like better.”