What if conflict management could transform from something stressful into oh so simple? Honestly, it’s uncomfortable and exhausting to have unresolved issues in relationships. Plus, there are far more productive ways to spend your time rather than feeding the unwanted drama.

How well do you handle the issues that pop up within the church, over a conversation with friends, or even in your closest relationships at home?

Disagreements are inevitable, but how the conflict is managed will vary from person to person.

Juggling multiple emotions and differing viewpoints can be a real pain for maintaining healthy relationships, but it doesn’t have to stay that way.

The time has come to flip the script on conflict management so you can get back to the things that add value and joy to your life.

Here are 5 simple ways to overcome conflict today:

1. Soften Up:
Choose to avoid harsh words when entering the conversation to promote relational closeness. Use a gentle tone of invitation rather than a demanding stance for successful conflict management. When you soften up from the start, it is more likely to resolve on a softer note. (Proverbs 15:1, James 1:19).

2. Seek Repair:
Choose behavior that affirms the relationship and seeks to keep the argument or discussion from spiraling out of control. (Ephesians 4:25-26).

3. Chill Out:
Take a break when you need to cool down and set a time for resuming your discussion with a cooler head. When you give yourself the space to regroup, you will find common ground. (Ephesians 4:27).

4. Be Flexible:
Humility and flexibility will lead to healthy relationships. Choose to value others and be ready to compromise. (Philippians 2:3-4).

5. Check Emotions:
Double-check your emotions so that you can continue to connect in conversation to find a resolution for the problem. The goal is to avoid anger and bitterness while remaining kind and compassionate. (Ephesians 4:31-32).

Managing conflict is as much about the process as it is about a final solution. Enter the conversation with a perspective of repair and respect, and it will ultimately help you win the war on strife in your life.

 

By: Dr. Toddy Holeman
Dr. Holeman is chair of the Department of Counseling and Pastoral Care at Asbury Theological Seminary.

This post is adapted from a post that originally appeared here. All rights reserved, Used by permission.