Conflict is something that everyone is forced to participate in on a regular basis yet few of us are actually any good at engaging in it in a way that brings life to all parties. Most of that has to do with what we believe about conflict. I want to highlight what I think are 4 common myths about conflict.
Here are 4 common myths about conflict
- Conflict is avoidable
Conflict is unavoidable! There is no possible way to avoid getting into conflict with people. This is because we are all unique and even if you meet someone with the same likes/dislikes and a similar way of thinking and understanding the fact remains that they are not you and therefore you will have conflict at some point. It’s ironic that we tell children about how special and unique they are as they grow up but once they are adults they are often told not to “rock the boat” so that they can avoid conflict.
- Conflict is unnecessary
We are designed to exist in relationship with other people. The only way to have a vibrant and growing relationship with someone is through gaining an appreciation of that what makes you different from one another. If you want authentic relationship you need conflict.
- Conflict destroys relationship
This is only true in poorly managed conflict. The belief in this myth has caused a great deal of angst in my extended family because simmering tensions were simply ignored in order to not make the relationships any worse. The reality is that God has designed conflict to be the doorway to intimacy both in our relationships with people and with himself. The happiest married couples are not the ones that never fight but the ones that manage their conflicts in a life-giving way.
- Conflict is bad
Conflict is not inherently bad it is just unfortunate that it is so frequently poorly managed that it appears to be bad. Conflict is the spice of life. Without it life becomes so bland and boring. That doesn’t mean going out looking to have conflict. Just learn that conflict is the means through which you can gain a different perspective on issues.
There you go folks, some of my thoughts about conflict. Godly conflict resolution is one of my hobby horses so I’m sure I’ll write about it again. Leave a comment below or ask me a question if you have any and I’ll respond ASAP.