Think of one conflict you find yourself in at the moment or the last you had and reflect on what where your motivation to hold on to the conflict or to enter the conflict in first place.
Then you can consider what you know about the motivation of the other party in the conflict. Do you actually know what the motivation of the other is?
Often conflicts are seen as a simple match between parties, both sure to be right and both prepared to have a fight over it. One will win, the other will lose. Unfortunately the efforts and all the attention tends to go to the goal of winning, rather than to finding a solution that improve the situation.
What has been discovered is that there are ways to approach a conflict differently, with a different objective in mind, not to win, but to discover and to learn. The point of this approach is creating deeper understanding and creative solution, possibly deeper connection instead of digging trenches and fighting a war for the sake of ego.
When you focus on winning, you loose sight of what is best for everybody, you close off to understanding what is really going on under the surface and if you realize that doesn’t it feel like loosing a bit? Loosing perspective, loosing learning opportunities, loosing contact with your environment and what is really needed.
The perspective of engaging in a conflict to win is normally ego driven and as such quite egoistic and serving the interest of one person alone or a small group.
Conflicts arise more often when the interest of two opposite parties collide. When two parties don’t manage to understand each other anymore, don’t see and don’t understand each other any longer.
Wouldn’t be a good medicine to move in the direction of rectifying just that? The misunderstanding, the invisibility and distrust?
It may seem a really difficult task to fulfil, but it is not that difficult. It simply requires a change of perspective, from the perspective of knowing that you are right to the perspective of wanting to know why the other is so sure he/she is right.
Asking questions, questions about the motivation the other party has to be part of the conflict, questions sincerely aimed to find out what brought the other party to the conflict. Questions to unveil why the conflict is so important for the other.
Needless to say you need to be prepared to answer openly the same questions for this to work. Consider what would you like to understand of the point of view of your opponent and just as important what you want the other party to understand about your point of you.
Imagine approaching a conflict with all this information in your hands. How would it change things? How would you feel if you understood so much about the motivation of the other and you knew the other understood you too?
It would be an exchange between conscious human being that realize that being right is not the point, finding a solution is. Winning is no objective worth fighting for, connecting with the other party is, creating a solution together that brings you both forward is.