Conflict isn’t always bad
I have been up to my eyeballs in conflict as of late, and for someone whose natural tendency is peacemaking and empathy it hasn’t been an easy place to stand. But I’m learning that conflict isn’t always bad, that it is necessary for growth. The challenge is knowing when to stand your ground, when to compromise, and when to yield.
Getting better at anything doesn’t come by accident. It’s a choice. It’s a number of tiny choices that lead to the big ones. I’m sounding cliché, but there is a reason clichés are cliché, they resonate.
Conflict produces growth
Conflict is necessary for growth. If everyone in the group simply yields/surrenders/appeases the strongest voice then there is no authentic movement forward. An organization will be at it’s best when every individual learns to speak up, relinquishes selfishness, is vulnerable and trusts the group, while simultaneously holding on to their convictions.
Yielding does not equal loss. Sometimes it means a compromise has been made, other times it may mean a mind has been changed. To yield is not to be the weakest one in the group. Often conceding is the stronger position when we realize it is what is right for the whole.
The partnership of marriage
Marriage is like that, a series of give and take. One voice should never be the loudest but rather a partnership of growth is created.
Marriage is a selfless act. It is continuing to place another’s needs and happiness before your own. I don’t mean to say that you should lose yourself; I only mean to say that when you love and honor your husband, his happiness and well-being should always be on your mind. Marriage is not about what I can do to make me happy. Marriage is a commitment to live my life with and for another.”
– Finding Joy: The Year Apart That Made Me A Better Wife
The board room and marriage are not that different. Whether I am in a heated debate with a coworker, employee or my spouse, if I suddenly realize my end game is simply my own well-being it is time to take a step back and consider if this is the place where I should yield.
Life is a give and take. Sometimes we stand our ground but we must choose carefully our motivations and if winning in this moment is really a loss.
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