CONFLICT RESOLUTION & RELATIONSHIP MANAGEMENT...
Appropriate Resolutions for life’s relationships.
“We have compulsive needs: to win, to control, to be loved. Likewise, we have compulsive fears: inner blockages, fears generated by PAST relationships, fear of conflict. When we experience doubts and suspicions, we are motivated to react while also, ironically, we are constrained. The bonds which hold us back exist in all of us and also often make us blind to our own limits and confusion, and to the beauty and gifts of those who are appear different. Under the control of our compulsions, others can quickly become a threat, serving as barriers in the way of the love or the success some people (if not most) need so badly."
The excerpt above, paraphrased from Jean Vanier's 1998 Massey lectures (Becoming Human, Anansi Press, 1998, P.113) says it 'like it is', too often.
For years, when Jeff began to feel too frustrated with what he deserved yet was not getting, his personal relations at work, at home or at play inevitably deteriorated. His pattern was to immediately look around for alternatives; it was the same for jobs, careers, or 'lady-friends' (his euphemism for lovers). As his frustration grew, he repeated his favoured 'exit' strategy, looking for ways to get out on his own terms. Jeff avoided talking about what was going on for him, so predictably, escalation and arguments evolved; in this way, Jeff created the perfect excuse to self-extract from any relationship and to move on, often leaving bitterness, and broken friendships in his wake. Fortunately for Jeff, he was able enough to survive all the internal tsunamis and to escape with only collateral damage and with his own power intact. Such abilities only served to support his perspective that his behaviour was working, at least for him. Jeff always acknowledged that he had made some enemies but after all, he "…never purposefully hurt anyone…;" all he wanted "…was to have fun, avoid hassles, and live life to the fullest."
Jeff's natural conflict styles included attacking not only the issues, but also the messengers if he saw he wasn't winning; never physically, but as one colleague observed, "Jeff should come with a warning label; when he gets mad his mouth becomes a lethal weapon." What people didn't realize was that Jeff, at the time, was a classic avoider; he didn't know how to 'leave life's playing fields' gracefully so he created situations whereby he could ultimately blame the other (s) for the dissolution of the relationship, for his leaving.
That's the way it was until Jeff looked into a mirror one day and experienced an ah-ha moment; for the first time he glimpsed alternatives whereby he could have his needs satisfied while still maintaining friendly, or at least functional relationships. He also began to accept that those 'effective ways' required a maturity which he lacked. In the interim, he realized that he had to 'curb' his compulsions if he wanted different outcomes.
ABOUT Conflict... What conflicts look like…
Disputes … WHAT DO DISPUTES LOOK LIKE, and how do people react or respond when conflicts escalate into disputes? (the many faces of conflict),.
CONFLICT RESOLUTION TIPS AND GUIDELINES: Strategies and behaviours for you to apply when in conflict.
CONFLICT CHRONICLES: Original stories by Joseph Ravick with a common theme. The chronicles feature real-life conflicts describing the people, their relationships, and the outcomes which they experienced whether they liked it or not.