If life were only as simple as when parents would tell their children to shake hands and give each other a hug after a disagreement, there would probably be less relationships broken and far less lawsuits being filed. Unfortunately, life tends to become far more complicated than it should as people get older and many things tend to get in the way of being to resolve something that would otherwise be quite easy to deal with. It is no wonder that many relationships, whether on a professional or personal basis, need to be put through the established conflict resolution strategies.
Conflict can occur at any age and is not limited to those that belong to just a particular sex, race, religious affiliation, and so on. While individuals or groups who may have differences often experience conflict, it goes without saying that even those who share many similarities also go through conflicts. A lot of the time, people will either choose to pretend as if nothing happened and try to go on with their relationships even though some awkwardness may settle in or they choose to simply end the affected relationship, ignore one another, and avoid any contact with each other.
Conflict resolution strategies come in when one, both, or all parties involved in a conflict want to find a way to salvage what they can. There are many strategies that individuals and groups can try out when faced with situations that may run the risk of destroying a relationship they have. One of the most effective ways to deal with conflict is by maintaining open lines of communication. It is important to remember that communication is not just about talking but actually taking the time to listen to what the other party has to say and keep an open mind.
Part of all this communication is being able to relay what each other’s concerns are and to listen to suggestions on how to best get over any bumps along the road. Feeling as if it is okay to put forth one’s opinions means that the other party is thought to be open to listening. Of course, all this communication needs to be followed up with positive action so that it is not just all talk. Proper steps need to be taken to resolve any issues and if there is a tangible process that can take place then all the better.
Another aspect of communication has to deal with acknowledging when something is not working and taking the time to reassess. Every single strategy may not work in every single situation and there may be times that a professional may need to step in to help mediate and put forth other conflict resolution strategies. Some strategies may only work in a school setting, others in a work setting, and then there are those that may only prove effective in a more personal family setting. What is important to keep in mind is to believe that there are always solutions worth trying.