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Waning Crescent Moon
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Forums -> Misc Topics -> Conflict

Post # 1

Here, and everywhere else in the world, youll find conflict. You may not agree with something that someone else said, you may dislike another persons stance on a subject, you may choose to argue with them. But what really is conflict and how can we manage it appropriately?

What is conflict?

Conflict comes from Latin roots com and figere: com meaning together and figere meaning to strike. The dictionary defines "conflict" as " a struggle to resist or overcome; contest of opposing forces or powers; strife; battle. A state or condition of opposition; antagonism; discord. A painful tension set up by a clash between opposed and contradictory impulses . " Conflict in its most basic element is a struggle between people with opposing views, who perceive a situation differently. It is the perception that ones goals, aspirations, plans, viewpoints, beliefs and etc are incompatible with anothers.

What causes conflict?

Morton Deutsch, a social psychologist, proposes that there are 6 basic types of issues:

1. Control over resources





6.Nature of relationship between people

I find that you can accurately sum up all these things with one word: differences.

Conflict is concerned with difference. We all will find that our viewpoints and stances are NOT universal, and no matter how you may strive to avoid conflict you will undoubtedly find it. Opposing views, beliefs, etc will lead to conflict.

Bringing people together in social interaction necessarily involves a set of interpersonal dynamics which sooner or later will lead to conflict.

Positive Effects:

  • Promote growth in a relationship
  • Allows for healthy release of feelings
  • Increases motivation

Negative Effects:

  • Larger/Deeper problems may occur
  • Manner in which we approach conflict
  • Can lead to stressful events/feelings

Behavior Styles:

Passive/Nonassertive Style:

-Avoidance and submissive

By avoiding conflict, you usually will not get blamed/rejected but you may hold resentment/anger.

Aggressive Style:

-Move against and dominant

Other people may not push you around if youre being aggressive but this style puts others down and will make you enemies. Needs of an angry speaker: To vent, to get the listeners attention, to be heard, to be understood.

Assertive Style:

-Moving toward and collaborative

This can be a great style if used properly. You, generally, get more of what you want without making others mad.

Strategies for handling conflict:

Avoiding Strategy: Lose/Lose

Individuals may avoid the conflict by refusing to take a stance, leaving it or ignoring it. Most people that use this tend to hope the issue will go away

Accommodating Strategy: Lose/Win

Individuals attempt to resolve a conflict by giving in to the other party. They usually prefer harmony to conflict.

Competing/Forcing Strategy: Win/Lose

Aggressive/uncooperative attitude- this can turn into a Lose/Lose situation.

Collaborating Strategy: Win/Win

Parties attempt to jointly resolve a conflict with a solution that is agreeable to all parties.

Resolving conflict:

1. Acknowledge that a situation exists .

2. Let individuals express their feelings .

3. Define the problem .

4. Determine underlying need .

5. Find common areas of agreement, no matter how small .

6. Find solutions to satisfy needs.

7. Determine follow-up you will take to monitor actions.

8. Determine what you'll do if the conflict goes unresolved .


Choose your battles carefully

Be calm and avoid loaded words and put downs

Do not blame others or make accusations

Do not demand- instead request

Avoid statements such as always/never

Listen without judging

Take responsibility for your words/actions

Dont be afraid to apologize


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Re: Conflict
By: / Knowledgeable
Post # 2
I question, can collaboration in values, Goal or Beliefs change the substance/ purpose of the value/belief/Goal which can be lose/lose?
I am just saying the way you graded strategies for handling conflict(win/win, Win/lose, lose/win, lose/lose) seems to me to convoluted in a way, as if it is best not to have any belief/values/Goals. also you make it seem as if conflict is a bad/ unpleasant thing.
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Re: Conflict
By: / Novice
Post # 3

thank you for siting your sources! they help

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Re: Conflict
Post # 4

The "Win/Win" and such senarios are simply titles to explain the outcomes of said strategies, which was taken from psycho-analyst work I've read up on. They are not structurally perfect nor 100% applicable to any scenario. Yes, collaboration would change these scenarios. As for conflict itself, it can be both positive and negative- though I tend to see more negative on here than positive, which was the purpose of the entirity of this outline. But it can be quite beneficial, a great growing experience and a way to learn things you normally wouldn't. Conflict provides a key for changing perspectives.

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Re: Conflict
By: / Knowledgeable
Post # 5
Ohh, now I understand the context of which you speak and it can be applied to the platform of this site sorta. though, still these scenarios of outcomes are still portrayed like some kind of grade and if these graded outcomes (win/win, lose/lose)are stated as such, it seems as if these psycho-analyst are trying to brainwash or subliminally suggest there ideal behavior response. which means they are no longer stating what they are analyzing but instead trying to influence the reader and justifying in the name of scientific research. though there are many good points, it still seems to use suggestion to manipulate behavior
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Re: Conflict
Post # 6
That gives pause for thought. Yes- I can quite see what you mean.
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