Tips for Transforming Conflict
Most of us are aware that there is a more constructive way to deal with conflict. Typically called a win-win, collaborative or cooperative approach, it can be applied to all kinds of conflict, from small everyday disputes between individuals to large ones that divide communities. So, how do we move from an adversarial approach to a common ground approach? Here are a few tips that might help:
- Accept that conflicts are a natural part of life:
Conflict is the natural result of differences in the world.
- Treat conflict as an opportunity:
Conflicts are neither positive nor negative in themselves.
- Be aware of your initial reaction and take a deep breath.
- Choose your approach:
There are always choices in a conflict. Some conflicts are just not worth dealing with.
- Listen and learn:
Ask questions and listen. We all want to be heard and understood.
- Discover what's important:
Disagreements over positions can cloud our common interests.
- Respect each other.
- Be creative:
There are always many different ways to solve a problem and meet a need.