In life we will experience many conflicts. Conflict doesn’t have to always be with another person or thing, sometimes we wage conflict within ourselves. Learning to manage conflict properly is going to save you a lot of time and strife.
Not every argument has to occur, not ever fight has to happen, and not every wrong has to be addressed. We have all heard the saying “pick your battles wisely”, this means you can choose which battles are worth fighting.
Did you know conflict starts long before you even address the person? It starts in your mind, if you are like me you have the whole argument figured out before you ever get to the person. It may go a little something like this: I can’t believe she just said that, next time I see her I am going to let her know I didn’t like what she said and I dare her to say something back. Another example I bet when I get home the dishes are still going to be in the sink, the kids just don’t listen, they are going to get it when I get home.
What happens? You carry this conflict around with you all day and sometimes for days. The conflict is ongoing and until you can tell the person what you have played over and over again in your mind the conflict is still raging. At this point the other person doesn’t even know you all are fighting.
One day I was leaving work, walking to my car, it was a Wednesday. On Sunday this person said something I didn’t like. It wasn’t directed toward me but I felt like they were throwing “shade” my way. I talked to my husband about it Sunday night, I talked to my best friend about it Monday, and by Tuesday I was heated. Wednesday I decided I was going to call this person as soon as I got to my car. Walking to my car I went through the whole argument, it went something like this: “Sunday you said something I really didn’t like and I feel like you were being shady, I have done nothing but support you but for you to say something like that it really hurt my feelings. Hold on let me finish (yes, I did), people think they know stuff about me but they really don’t. Everything I got, I worked hard for so for you to try and be shady knowing my struggle is really messed up.”
In this argument I knew the person wasn’t going to take responsibility for their action, I accounted for this already. After I finished sorting out how the conflict was going to in my head, I heard a voice say now is this worth your time? My answer was no, I do not have to defend my blessings. Not only that but I had let the conflict control enough of my time and energy and the sad part about it was the person never knew we were in conflict with each other.
Conflict is not just physical; it is also mental and it will disturb your peace. It will control your emotions and it will ruin relationships. Managing conflict is important. A few questions to ask yourself:
- Is this worth my time?
- Will what I say make a difference?
- Is this worth my peace?
- Is this my battle to fight?
- Will I be okay if the relationship ends?
If you answered no to any of these questions, let it go. Not every battle is worth fighting and not every battle is yours to fight.
You know I don’t write anything without relating it back to the bible. I will leave you with two bible verses today.
- Proverbs 15:1: A gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.
- Ephesians 4:26: Be angry, and yet do not sin, do not let the sun go down on your anger.
Both verses are telling us to be careful of what we let flow out of our mouths, hearts, and minds and both are telling us to not stir up anger but let it go. Doing this is for you, it won’t feel good at first but in the end, you didn’t lose anything. You are not weak when you let conflict go you are strong because you were able to overcome and you will be rewarded in the end.