How Can Conflict Increase Self-Esteem


To enjoy your relationships with others, it is imperative that you learn the art of negotiation.

How can conflict increase self-esteem? The very moment you are in contact with another person, there is the potential for conflict. However, it isn't conflict that causes stress; it's how conflict is handled. If you do not avoid conflict and instead deal with it, you will not only eliminate many of life's stresses, you will also feel more relaxed and confident.

If you find yourself continually fighting, becoming irritated or perhaps downright hostile when differences between you and others surface, what this means is that you lack the skills to effectively deal with wishes, ideas or needs that are not your own. If you want to enjoy your relationships with others, it is imperative that you learn the art of negotiation.

Conflict causes discomfort. If you are uncomfortable, it is likely that the person you are in conflict with also feels discomfort. Since you are both uncomfortable, make this the starting point of your discussion. Let him or her know you want to eliminate his or her discomfort by resolving the conflict. Agree on a time and place to meet to resolve the conflict.

Be Assertive - Not Aggressive
Come prepared. Make a list of the things you want to say, including what you believe is the cause of the conflict and what you think might be the other person's point of view. Be sure to focus on a particular area of conflict, and stay with the idea of resolving that conflict. Be honest. If there is part of the conflict you can legitimately take responsibility for, do so, and vow to make the necessary changes.

Take ownership of your behaviors and feelings. No one makes you angry. However, you may feel angry. For example, don't say, "You make me angry because you are always late. Instead, say, "When you are late, I feel angry."

No two people have the same wants, wishes or understanding of events. Once you have clearly explained what you believe to be the conflict, and how it can be resolved, listen and be prepared to make a reasonable compromise. However, there is no reason to be a push over. You want conflict resolution to be collaborative, which means finding resolution that everyone involved can feel good about.

Resolution happens when everyone takes ownership of their part of the conflict and makes the necessary changes. Conflict resolution means less stress, which equates to greater confidence and self-esteem.



This article was originally published at . Reprinted with permission from the author.