5 Ways Conflict Can Lead to Change

Conflict can be internal or external. It can come in the form of conflict with ourselves or others. However, not all conflict can be a bad thing. Sometimes the difficult situations can push ourselves and others into a new territory. Change comes after conflict, allowing for better opportunities and positive experiences to arise. While making “lemonade out of lemons” can be tricky, there are a few ways to ease the transition from conflict to change or finding a solution. Whenever you find yourself at odds with yourself or someone else, try these tips to make the best of the situation. 

  1. Disagreements are inevitable. Be sure to address the conflict and not let it be swept under the rug. If it is a struggle within yourself, determine the root cause. Then, try to find solutions to prevent the conflict from happening again. If it is a disagreement with someone else, communicate with them. Have a conversation about what happened and why there was a conflict. Seek to understand the other person’s side. Maybe you didn’t fully understand where they were coming from or the reasons behind their opinion. But always remember to be respectful. We all come from different backgrounds with various values and beliefs, which can cause misunderstandings. Always talk through the situations, as communication can pave the way for change. Ask questions about possible triggers for conflict, how to avoid it, and how to best work towards a solution. This is the time to learn more about yourself and others. 
  2. Whatever type of conflict it is, decide on what you want to happen as an outcome. Do you want something to be different because of this argument? Or do you wish for everything to stay the same? Don’t be afraid to be honest with yourself and others. This is a time to work towards the better. 
  3. Along with knowing what you hope to come out of the dispute, take into consideration what the other party wants to achieve. This doesn’t mean to settle on your plans, but it is important to keep them in mind and allows you to set expectations. Common ground can be found, leading to a greater outcome for change. Also, reflect on their side and viewpoint. It may be an opinion you haven’t considered yet, but one that could help you succeed in your plans. 
  4. Once you know more about the clash and the intentions, work towards finding a solution. This solution should be one that is positive. Be creative with your ideas and discuss what could work for everyone involved. It is helpful to come up with several potential resolutions. Evaluate the pros and cons of each one. Also, list the positives and how they could lead to change. Lastly, consider the impact of the solution on everyone, how it will be implemented, and how long it will take to start. The key is to act quickly, but thoughtfully. 
  5. Use the conflict for the greater good by learning from it. Conflict is all about growth and you can’t grow without learning. When you come across similar experiences, you will be better equipped to handle them, thus creating more change and positivity. The goal for turning conflict into change is to improve, or prevent the same conflict from happening again. Hopefully, the outcome will lead to improvement rather than just prevention. 

Conflicts can be large or small. But they can also create large or small changes. Use these moments for the opportunity to better yourself, and remember that even a small change helps you grow as a person, thus creating more positivity and teachable moments in your life.  



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