How do you “dial back conflict”? Interestingly, it is more about being vulnerable than appearing strong. So says Nadia Lopez an educator who works in difficult contexts. She has tips to share.
Tips to consider
- Be vulnerable.
This seems counter-intuitive. Openness and honesty is called for when times are challenging. This enables you to demonstrate trust and develop mutual respect in your work teams. Authenticity is valued over bravado.
- Be aware.
Ask more questions. When things are working, ask “Why?”
- Centre yourself.
Being calm is important. Take time to develop this through mindfulness. Start with a daily dose of 5 minutes. Build on this. Learning to be present to what is happening and not to react to it is a great competence in dealing with conflict situations.
- Manage mediation.
Manage mediations so that there is no yelling. Instead, wait to speak. Respect a person’s turn to explain their side. Allow this expression to happen. The spirit of curiosity is important to fully appreciate each perspective.
- Listen deeply and actively.
In tense moments, listening is important. It paves the way for acknowledgement of the feelings of others. Reflective language is important to demonstrate that they have been heard.
- Acknowledge, respect and thank. Repeat.
A simple message (email, text or brief handwritten note) has the power to touch deeply. This conveys empathy and commitment to resolving issues and manage challenging encounters.
What are your conflict management tips?
Would you share your tips for managing conflict? Please type them below to share your thoughts and ideas.
Source: Educator Nadia Lopez (TED Talk: Why open a school? To close a prison)