The other day, there was a ruckus in the office, with one colleague shouting, no, screaming at the other, while the rest of us looked on or looked away in frank embarrassment, and apprehension.
This was when our Manager walked in. He appeared unruffled, and retained his cool through the episode, and although he did not take sides or argue for one against the other, he still managed to resolve the conflict peacefully, and restored peace. The two colleagues are almost friends today.
How did this happen? How is it that some people are capable of solving conflicts within minutes, and peacefully at that, while some others helplessly join in the fray and shout and scream like the others?
Here are some tried and tested tips offered by experts, on how exactly to handle a conflict so that peace is restored.
- Stay calm, no matter what the situation is, and let the storm run its course. Quite often, the angry person is trying to provoke you, and if you donâ€™t react, the entire thing will fizzle out in a short while.
- Most of the time, the other person wants attention, and someone to listen to him. Lend him your ears, and let him talk; he will soon grow tired of it and stop.
- Try, if you possibly can, to put yourself in the other personâ€™s shoes: it will automatically make you understand his feelings, and why he is saying, what he is saying.
Now, let us consider kids. Sibling rivalry is as common as breathing or sneezing, and all kids will fight, the rivalry having been caused by natural competitiveness between the siblings.
Mindless arguments, put downs, noisy quarrels, and physical and verbal abuse are all part and parcel of conflict at home between siblings, and as conscientious parents, we must learn to help our kids focus on the problem at hand, and not on their sibling.
Here too, a parent can resolve conflict by using certain recommended strategies:
- Listen to both sides of the story.
- Do not make judgmental decisions; make sure you address the issue and not the child. Never respond automatically to your child carrying tales; you will only add to the existing conflict, and not help in any way to resolve it.
- Make sure the child gets to cool off before you sit down with him to sort out the conflict; this will give everyone a clear perspective on things.
- Focus on the relationship rather than on the conflict.
The most important thing in resolving conflict is to make sure that you follow what you preach, at home and outside. Try to be a role model yourself, so that everyone around you can watch you and learn from you.