One of the things I’ve discovered in my own life and in coaching others is that running from confrontation only creates more problems. Confrontation is one of the best things that can happen to any relationship! The key is, it has to be done properly so that in insites the dialogue to resolution and growth.
Here are the steps to proper confrontation and effective conflict resolution
- Do not confront while angry. This may seem like the obvious, but you’ll be amazed how many times we (me included) forget this. We go off on a tangent only making things worse. So before you confront, calm down!
- Do not use abusive language. Now abusive language is not just cuss words. Abusive language is anything that is said with the sole purpose of insulting, manipulating or getting back at the other person. Those jabs may satisfy our ego temporarily, yet they hurt us in the long run. Not only do they destroy relationships, they also keep us stuck and unable to mature in that particular area. Believe me, if you want great success, you will have to go through maturing processes frequently.
- Do not accuse. Taking ownership is so sexy, really it is! If you want the person you’re confronting to open up, don’t dump the responsibility of your happiness on them. This means instead of saying “you make me feel like this” you can start with this instead.
Hey Jane Doe, the other day when we were talking you did or said something that I think came off the wrong way and I have to admit I was offended by it. Do you think we can talk about it? I would hate for a misunderstanding to get in the way of our friendship.
When we open up like this to someone, most of the time they will be more than happy to hear you out and work with you to clarify things. You’ll see that in few incidents will there be a reason to end a relationship. Most people genuinely care to communicate effectively. The best part is when you approach that someone with respect and they see your point, you’ve now built a deeper more meaningful relationship on the foundations of trust, vulnerability and growth.