Good afternoon teachers and friends, since the begining of time, humans have always waged conflicts. Some would say that conflict followed adam and eve out of the garden of eden. Evidently, conflict is a key element of life. While major conflicts such as wars have destroyed many lives and resulted in massive destruction, history confirms that great achievements of individual lives and societies are the result of struggle. I believe that a dull complacency exists in people who do not experience or avoid conflict.
No one desires conflict in their lives, but it is inevitable. Though conflict can be difficult to deal with, it is not always bad.Conflict is the clash of ideologies and the term comes from the latin word conflictus which means hitting together with force. The term sounds so negative so how can conflict benefit us?Firstly, conflict allows us a chance at self betterment. John Dewey, a philosopher once said, that conflict is the gadfly of thought that stirs us to observation and memory that instigates invention and shocks us out of a sheep like passivity, and sets us to noting and contriving. Bubble wrap was created in the 1960s as an attempt to create a trendy new textured wallpaper. It was a total failure, but the inventors did not admit defeat.
They found a way to turn their creation into a whole new industry of packaging. It was eventually used by IBM to package their computers during transport, and bubble wrap became an overnight success. This shows that expression of different ideas and perspectives is vital for creativity and innovation.
Without different points of views and ideas, decisions suffer because they are made without relevant information or the exploration of various courses of action. (disagreements of science theories leading to scientific discoveries ??)Secondly, Conflict leads to solutions. The American Civil war that ended slavery that once divided the country and the people from the begining, came at the cost of over 6 hundered thousand lives. When structures or agreements that are in place are no longer working, something needs to change. Change is hard because it creates discomfort and we naturally want to hang on to what we are used to even when it’s clearly invalid and in need of improvement.
President Abraham Lincoln thought that America, a nation build upon the belief that all men were created with an equal right to liberty, could not exist as one of the largest slaveholding country in the world. He took a stand agaisnt slavery and paved the way for the emancipation of slaves in america. Conflict also allows us to differentiate ourselves. Most of the time, conflict lies under the surface, covered over by politeness and decorum stemming from a desire to preserve relationships. Differentiation is the capacity to tell the truth from our perspective,as we see things, at the same time listening to those who believe differently from us, thus setting the foundation for successful communication. Not everyone can handle conflict correctly.
So heres how to prevent conflict from going south!Conflict must be engaged in a way that preserves the dignity of the opponent. In external conflicts, attitude is the critical factor. If we can state our stand, listen to the position of the other, and then find a way to meet in the middle, that is the best of all worlds- a win-win situation. But when we are unable to meet in the middle, it then becomes a situation of how much ground we’re willing to give. A good question to ask oneself might be, “In the big picture, how important is this to me?” “Is my position here worth losing a relationship over?” Get your piorities right and If your position is essential to you, then stand your ground in a manner that respects the other’s right to differ. It is said that conflict is the beginning of consciousness.
We engage in conflict from time to time, though miserably uncomfortable, is a necessary step toward gaining insight and decisiveness. The old cliche that you cant have one without another rings true indeed. Thank You