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When we’re in conflict with someone life can feel complicated and unrelated, troubling worries – about all sorts of things – might then pervade our thoughts and feelings. For instance, inner conflicts about decisions we have to make about our work, home-life, and relationships may become larger and out of whack as our unsettled feelings grow. We might spend a lot of time agonizing about what went wrong, what to do, or whether to do anything about the conflict. But, the remnants of that conflict that leak into other things going on in our lives also pervade and add to the angst. It seems, from my experience anyway, that I somehow build more layers of negative emotions about the other person in the conflict when I let other things in and add them to the pile. Self-limiting beliefs kick in and I tend to lose track of what’s important and what isn’t. This may happen to you too.

Also, interpersonal conflict also has a way of compounding self-doubt when fears of losing the relationship with the other person preoccupy us. When we let ourselves become vulnerable and express our needs, not knowing if they’ll be met, we face more of the unknown. And, at these times, knowing what we might let go of is illusive. That is, we might hold the pain closer without a way of knowing how to gain perspective. The complexities and layers are certainly all-consuming, unless we are willing to find a way to step back and consider what Dhiman says in this quote.

This week’s Conflict Mastery Quest(ions) blog invites you to consider an interpersonal conflict that is complicating your life as you answer the following questions.

  • What’s the interpersonal conflict about?
  • What feels most complicated about it? Why do you suppose that is?
  • What is most important to you about this situation?
  • How do you want things to be with the other person?
  • What (else) is getting in the way of that happening – such as in your professional and/or personal life?
  • What emotions are you experiencing with all this?
  • What is one of the things about this conflict you feel you cannot let go of?
  • What makes that hard to let go of?
  • What part of the conflict will you let go of because it isn’t really that important in the scheme of things? What part of other things happening in your life, that are unsettling, may you let go of because you know you are making it/them bigger than it needs to be (if applicable)?
  • What are the best ways of simplifying what happened in this conflict so that you are able to move on and let go of?
  • What else occurs to you as you consider these questions?
  • What insights do you have?


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