‘Negotiating the Nonnegotiable’
Whether you’re talking about conflict in the office or at home, the biggest common denominator is that both involve humans, who tend to get emotionally charged. According to research there are five hidden emotional forces that strain your relations and block agreement and they are -
When you get so emotionally consumed in a conflict that you can’t see beyond it.
We tend to repeat the same dysfunctional patterns of behavior again and again.
It is the stigma attached to opening up about our issues because of the fear of potential social punishment for threatening the status quo.
Assault On The Sacred
Sacred is anything that you find deeply meaningful. It can be religion, notion of privacy, etc., trespassing which can lead to conflict.
Emotionally meaningful experiences that define you, your relationships, your aspirations and your organization. Basically how you see yourself or part of you in the larger picture.
The moment you feel attacked, these forces transform your conflict into an adversarial battle, turning even a straightforward disagreement into an emotional uproar. You can overcome these challenging personal and professional disputes. It’s much better to start with the assumption that negotiation may be possible to resolve – and it may just be with the following insights:
Use metaphors to understand the nature of your relationship
This is a simple, powerful way to unearth the emotional depths of your conflict. By this type of depiction, you understand better why the conflict feels so insurmountable.
Turn you and me to us
Work out your problems as two partners cooperatively tackling differences. Shift the dynamic, so it’s no longer me versus that other person in the conflict; it’s the two of us facing the same-shared conflict.
Listen & learn
When the other side attacks your perspective, it is very tempting to defend your views and attack back. Instead, take a deep breath and try to listen to the other side’s perspective.
Realise typical pattern of conflict
If you consistently get into conflict with your spouse or colleague, try to understand how the conflict typically starts and how it escalates.
Change one conflict behavior
After plotting the typical pattern, choose to change one behavior. It is a crucial step to negotiating the nonnegotiable.
Conflict is one of the greatest costs on any business, any company, any family. By understanding the underlying dynamics at play, the underlying emotional forces that tend to drive us toward conflict, we can work on resolving it.