Conflict Resolution: 10 Ways on How You Can Smooth Out Relationship Troubles
Relationships without conflict do not exist, at all. Conflicts are inevitable. It can make or break the relationship (oh yes) depending on how well you handle your conflicts. For some people, they try to look for someone they are compatible with thinking that there would be less conflict or none at all. The truth is, no matter what kind of relationship you have, whether you are compatible with your partner or not, you are bound to experience conflicts at some point. You just have to deal with them as they come, period. If you choose to ignore the conflict, it will reoccur elsewhere in the course of your relationship and it may cause the relationship to falter or worse, get broken. .
Conflicts arise due to many reasons and factors. Some factors that contribute to conflicts are:
- Individual differences
- Time and distance
- Lack of communication/miscommunication
- Physical, emotional and psychological problems
- Issues outside the relationship like third-party issues and family issues
- Cultural, moral, political and religious differences
- Trust issues
In order for us to efficiently solve conflicts, we need to start in ourselves by changing our attitude for the better. It doesn't mean however, that we need to change completely. We need to be willing to do a little bit of compromises here and there and do some necessary adjustments. We cannot expect and demand people to change for our sake. We can only choose to deal with the issues together. It takes experience and harmony in the relationship to bring back peace. When we have the skills to deal with life’s issues, then we can certainly resolve conflicts.
Here are some of the most effective tips in resolving conflicts to bring back harmony and peace in the relationship:
Learn and apply the art of empathy:
When we say empathy, it means the ability to put one self in another person’s place. We have to see the issue from our partner’s perspective. That is the only way for us to understand what the problem is all about. We should never try to argue with feelings. Empathy calls for us to listen with an open heart and mind for us to be able to fully grasp the reason why our partner behaves or feels that way.
When the connection is there, you feel what your partner is feeling. Seeing the conflict in our partner’s perspective does not mean we have to agree with their point of view though. It means using a different perspective in solving the issue. Empathy helps us see where the person is coming from and what goes on in their minds. When we learn to apply empathy in solving issues, we become more open-minded to the vulnerabilities and tendencies of our partner.
We cannot impose our will on people. We should not expect them to behave the way we want them to behave. Most often, lack of tolerance for people’s behavior and attitude causes the relationship to collapse and when it does, we usually tag it as “individual difference”. The point is, while individual differences can indeed lead to the relationship’s destruction, lack of tolerance is almost always the real culprit.
We often get upset when people fail to live up to our expectations. Of course, there are some things that cannot be tolerated but often it is in the little compromises we make that help keep the relationship harmonious and strong. When we become more tolerant of our partner’s mistakes and limitations (only to some extent, of course) we become closer to one another and our partner will be more responsible in making their own decisions. If we do not learn to build tolerance, the relationship will not last for sure. We don’t have to be indifferent because indifference is different. We just have to accept the fact that people make mistakes and we have our own limitations as well and that our partner is one of us.
When we are angry, we talk and behave differently. This is the reason why in terms of relationship matters, we should avoid making decisions when we are angry. Some relationships lead to break-up because the couples chose to respond to the issue with anger. While it is natural for humans to be angry, learning to control one’s anger is definitely a very important skill.
Anger exacerbates the problem. It drives people to feel condemnation and aggression. If you are angry, the best way to deal with it is to stop talking and arguing. Just give your time to cool off and when you have calmed down,then that is the best time to talk about the problem with your partner. If your partner is angry, do not respond with anger as well. Do not provoke your partner, instead, let him be. Let him say or vent out his anger and frustrations and after that, you can talk. Your partner will respect you more for being able to control your temper and your relationship will be much stronger after you have dealt with the issues together.
Struggle for harmony:
Every couple knows that harmony in a relationship is very important. It is not something that just pops out in the relationship. Harmony becomes a part of the relationship as the couples struggle to earn it. Harmony springs forth when the couple learns the value of oneness. Superiority and inferiority makes people want to prove their worth and this leads to conflicts. Harmony makes a relationship much stronger. When couples are in harmony, they resolve conflicts faster and easier. They are able to achieve their goals together and they are happy and contented with each other.
Be one with your partner:
Oneness in mind and emotion is essential in the relationship. You cannot be a couple if you do not feel the same for each other. However, oneness goes beyond feelings, instead, it calls for couples to feel happy at the success of each other and it also means that you celebrate each other's individuality.
There must be no competition in the relationship. When couples struggle to compete, they cannot generate oneness because they struggle to become individuals not a couple. In healthy relationships, there is no superior and inferior entity. The couple should always be equal and both should always struggle to put the other before their own self. Lack of harmony and oneness makes the relationship vulnerable to pride, jealousy, resentment, and insecurity. When these things penetrate the relationship, it is surely geared toward break-up unless worked out right away. When couples feel they are one with their partner they are less likely to do anything to hurt them.
Work out insecurities and inner poise:
Inferiority is the cause of insecurity. When someone in the relationship is insecure, it shows that there is lack of harmony in the relationship. When your partner struggles to establish who is superior, it is not healthy either. Competition leads to insecurities. We become insecure about ourselves and so we tend to compare everything with other people. We start to judge and criticize others because we want to feel better ourselves. What we do not realize is that insecurities can lead us to do things that harm the relationship and our partner.
In our struggle to show who is better in the relationship, we push our partner away from us. And this is not a sign of a healthy and harmonious relationship. When we are at peace with ourselves, we feel confident. And if we feel confident there is no way that we will become insecure of ourselves and our partner. We wouldn’t fish for compliments intentionally. There is simply no need for people and our partner to sing us praises. We become more positive and understanding of people and there is just no way that we will feel the need for security in others because we already feel secured in ourselves. If we work out our insecurities, we will not feel the need to compete, instead, we will treat our partner and see them as an equal.
Conflicts will never be solved without communication. So when there is conflict, the best way to handle it is to talk it out with your partner. Communication calls for proper talk and listening to what each other has to say. If you don’t have an open mind, you will not listen to the reason. And when it is hard to reason with you, the conflict will not be resolved.
Communication is a two-way process. You cannot just go and do everything by yourself. You need your partner to explain why it happened that way and you both need each other to make a decision as to how you can better solve the conflict. If you decide to solve it on your own by breaking-up, you will only hurt both you and your partner. But if the conflict goes on and on and on despite you talking it out together, then maybe, it is time for you to walk away. There are some things that are beyond your control. Some things cannot be changed. If your partner cannot seem to change his own attitude of constantly hurting you, then save yourself some dignity by leaving the relationship altogether.
Avoid getting angry over small matters:
This is also related to lack of tolerance. There are some little things that we make which do not really contribute to the relationship failure at all but still for some reason, irritates our partner. If this is the case, there must be a built-up tension or resentment between you and your partner that were not addressed right away that even with little things now , he/she seems to explode right away.This matter needs to be dealt with otherwise the relationship will be broken.
However, there are small things that really need to be overlooked because they don't mean a thing and don't deserve to be argued over. Things like clothes left on the floor or not being able to bring the toilet seat back down can be tolerated. If you get angry over small things, how much more will you react if it becomes a major issue? So, set the right mindset and perspective to getting angry over small matters.
Raising a problem does not entail digging your old scores. If there is a problem, raise it but do not relive the past issues that have been dealt with. The problem with most women is that they have such good memory that they can even remember what happened ten years ago and they are such capable beings to bring it to the present. This often makes the relationship conflict worse than it already is. Deal with problems one at a time and when they have been dealt with, forget about it. Do not dig old scores even if they are related to the issue at present. Deal with it as a couple and surely your partner has a good explanation for it. Listen to it with open-mind, don't judge and give your feedback in a positive manner. Stop blaming each other but instead solve the problem together.
Trust, trust, and trust:
Trust is probably the most important ingredient in a relationship (aside from love of course). A relationship without trust is not a relationship at all. When you have conflicts, trust makes you forgive your partner and give him/her another chance. If you trust, you believe and you hope.
Trust makes the other person truthful. It makes the other person care for you by being honest with you because they know you trust them. When a person trusts in you, you feel more responsible and careful of your actions.If you trust each other, no matter how many conflicts arise in the relationship, you will always battle it out together with your partner.
© 2018 Jennifer Gonzales