7 Tricks To Staying Calm In Disputes.
Keeping Mindful Under Pressure.
Conflict in your personal or work life can have its benefits if challenges are overcome and solutions are found. When all parties in a dispute remain calm, everybody has a clearer focus to help build fair and positive resolutions.
You don’t need to be scary calm; you want to participate in discussions actively and have some energy driving you to reach an agreement. If you tend to back down, a little pressure to keep you on track is good.
“Say what you mean, but don’t say it mean” — Andrew Wachter.
Conflict can fall into many categories; arguments between couples, friends, and family members; pay disputes at work; and meetings with your child’s school principal. Whatever the situation, a cool composure helps to steady everyone's emotions enough to foster a collaborative environment.
Remaining calm under pressure can be exhausting and near impossible for some. I easily fall prey to panic attacks, though I’m fine a majority of the time, past emotional abuse tends to rear its ugly head whenever things get too heated.
Meditation, mindfulness, breathing techniques, maintaining a peaceful lifestyle, and learning to prepare for, and actively manage conflict, has massively reduced my anxieties.
Whether conflict was planned or came out of the blue, these seven mindfulness tricks can strengthen your state of mind to cope under pressure.
When we exhale, our parasympathetic nervous system kicks into gear, and our body is in relax mode. Inhaling slowly through the nose and ensuring your abdomen rises, steadies the breath and engages the diaphragm, providing oxygen-rich blood and allowing your body to maintain control over your breathing.
2. Listen & Pause.
There are five common responses to conflict: avoiding, accommodating, competing, compromising, and collaborating. When we pick up on which responses other people are operating with through conscious listening, we can develop appropriate feedback and face difficulties more efficiently. Conscious listening involves asking questions, paraphrasing, being respectful, exploring all options, and pausing between listening and speaking.
3. Slow Your Speech & Thinking.
Listening and pausing brings us to the next point; slowing down your speech and your thinking. With our hearts and minds racing, it can be easy to talk too fast or too much in conflict. Speaking slowly forces you to take your time, process your thoughts, and consider your words. Steady speaking also opens up more space for clear thinking and for others to contribute.
4. Be Open & Honest.
Stating how you feel will solidify it within you and allow you to express yourself more freely.
When you’re dealing with somebody who is out to get you upset, they’ll enjoy hearing your vulnerabilities and may try to take advantage of them.
Outright stating that you’re not comfortable or not feeling heard may seem counterproductive in this situation.
However, openness and honesty brings depth to the conversation, breaks down communication barriers, and sets standards for the discussion moving forward.
5. Become Spock.
Looking through the lens of logic and separating oneself from emotions like Mr Spock from Star Trek keeps you calm enough to focus on solutions. Prioritising the necessary data over irrelevant information accelerates conflict resolution. It’s easier said than done, but it can steer you away from emotional reactions if you keep Spock in mind.
“Your highly emotional reaction is most illogical” — Mister Spock.
6. Make Solutions The Goal.
Develop an awareness of everyone's goals, including your own, and whether the conflict is a matter of difference in perspective or a misunderstanding that needs clarifying. When you remove potential obstacles, everyone can refocus on the solutions. Discuss all possible outcomes from various solutions to stay on track and avoid competitive or combative mindsets.
7. Focus On Your Body.
Let your body tell you where you are at in terms of tension. Is your breathing steady and your muscles relaxed? You can have better control over your body and your ability to remain calm when you are mindful of your breathing, heart rate, and movements. It is okay to realign and set another time for conflict resolution if the issue does not need your immediate attention.
None of these tips can help if you are dealing with a person or group of people who haven’t got everybody’s best interests at heart and are solely focused on their own goals. These types of people enjoy the conflict and are not interested in solutions.
If you have tried everything and certain people want to remain in attack or defence mode, the best you can do to stay calm and capable is point out that they’re not thinking of others, and the only solution may be to remove them, or yourself, from the situation.
Favourable outcomes can come from well-managed conflict if everybody can remain calm and consider the thoughts and interests of all parties.
Thank you for reading.
About the Creator
Writing about all matters of the mind, narcissism, personality disorders, parenting, writing, naturopathy, nutrition, and hopefully chapters from fantasy books I'll one day write.
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