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Conflict (Chapter 13) • “The most intense conflicts, if overcome, leave behind a sense of security and calm that is not easily disturbed. It is just these intense conflicts and their conflagration which are needed to produce valuable and lasting results.” - Carl Jung
Conflict • Disagreement between or among connected individuals such as friends, lovers, or family members. • Each person’s position and actions affect the other person.
Assertive Communication (Chapter 6) • Nonassertiveness • “You Win, I lose” • Aggressiveness • “I Win, You Lose” • Assertiveness • “I Win, You Win”
Nature of ConflictTrue or False? • If two people engage in relationship conflict, it means their relationship is in trouble. • Conflict hurts an interpersonal relationship. • Conflict is bad because it reveals our negative selves—for example, our pettiness, our need to be in control, our unreasonable expectations.
Inevitability • Conflict will occur in most relationships. • What matters for interpersonal communication is how you deal with it.
Nature of Conflict • If conflict is approached properly, it can actually help a relationship. • What is revealing is how you approach conflict.
1. Defining the Conflict • Content and Relationship issues • Specific Terms • Focus on Present • Empathize • Avoid Mind Reading
Avoid Gunnysacking • Comes from the large burlap bag called a gunnysack. • Storing up grievances from the past for use in future disputes.
2. Examine Possible Solutions • Brainstorm solutions • Create an open, supportive environment • Look for win-win solutions (Assertive Communication)
3. Test the Solution • Test solution mentally in present and future. • Test solution in practice.
4. Evaluate the Solution • Use six thinking hats • Fact • Feeling • Negative Argument (Devil’s Advocate) • Positive Benefits • Creative New Idea • Control of Thinking
5. Accept or Reject Solution • Make sure both communicators are satisfied. • Learn from the conflict • Keep the conflict in perspective • Attack negative feelings • Increase exchange of rewards and positive communication
Seven Unproductive Conflict Strategies (FAB VANS) • Forcers • Avoidance • Beltlining • Verbal Aggressiveness • Argumentativeness • Non-Negotiation • Silencers • What kind of communication is being used in these types (Assertive, Aggressive, or Passive)?
Forcers • Physically overpowering the other person, either by threat or actual behavior.
Avoidance • Taking or mental or physical flight from the conflict.
Beltlining • Arguing in an unfair way, “below the belt.” • Usually creates resentment and retaliation.
Verbal Aggressiveness • Attacking the other person’s self concept.
Argumentativeness • Willingness to argue for your point of view. But often without considering other’s feelings.
Non-Negotiation • Refusing to discuss the conflict, or listen to the other person.
Silencers • Tactic such as crying that literally silences the other person.