Saturday, January 9, 2010

Have a Seat

We get very busy in our lives. Between being slaves to our technology while we are constantly texting the person who is right across the table from us, and the busy work and soccer schedules, we barely have time to breathe. Then we hear the words, "Have a seat" and we know, we just know that our world is about to fall apart. We have missed something that has been right in front of us all the time, unnoticed, and now it is going to be put right in our faces and we are scared.

Whether it is a relationship that is about to change or a habit that needs to be broken or even a change in the workplace, change is frightening. The thing is that the change is inevitable. The growth as a result of the change is optional. The change would not have ended up being so frightening had we taken the time to have a seat and talk things through in the first place. You see, this would require the risk of conflict. We, as humans, don't like to have conflict in our lives. We avoid conflict at all costs. But what we really need to realize is that there is a difference between conflict and dispute.

If we can resolve things at the dispute stage, conflict need not even occur. Dispute allows us to clarify and to communicate more effectively. Conflict brings us to defensiveness and hostility. Yes, conflict can also get resolved, but it is much easier to resolve things at the dispute level than it is at the conflict level. Most people don't know the difference between the two and equate one with the other, thus going into fear and attack modes immediately. They actually avoid sitting down and talking things out. Then they wonder where it all went so wrong!

I am here to tell all started when you didn't want to have a seat.

Blessed Be
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Anonymous said...

Thank you for this!
So true!!!

Anonymous said...

Wise words! And I think I'm finally beginning to see the difference between dispute and conflict. I've always hated conflict, so much so that I've pretended to get along just to, well, get along. But deep down, I was pissed off--and avoiding dispute. But I could have faced the dispute honestly, I might have resolved the larger conflict before it ever began. Ah, hindsight...

Trent Deerhorn said...

Hindsight is always 20/20! It has taken me about 47 years to learn this one! Who knows how many lifetimes have been affected previous to this handy little discovery!