By Nan Nan Liu-Maffetone | Strong Female Leaders | Reading Time: Five Minutes
Whether you work in an office, a classroom or a lab, you are bound to run into conflicts. When you practice good strategies to resolve conflicts in the workplace and beyond, you build healthy relationships that lead to successful team- and relationship-building. If you want to master handling conflicts gracefully, scroll down and find various types of conflict resolution. Often, a confrontational experience offers a great way to grow, if you are open-minded and willing to learn.

1. Seek first to understand.
If you approach a conflict assuming the worst, then you will feel and expect only the worst. So don’t be surprised if the worst happens. However, if you enter a conflict assuming that everyone has the best intention and wants the best result, you can certainly expect good outcome to happen.
To initiate this type of positivity, start with the mentality that your entire existence revolves around seeking to understand other people‘s points of view. When you open your mind to understanding and learning about others, you will realize that your worst opponents seek the same resolution as you do. You will also realize that there are more than one side to the same story, and that no one is 100% right or wrong. Everyone has room to improve, and to get to that point, start By seeking to understand.
If you need help getting started, ask intuitive questions, express genuine curiosity and purposefully seek different perspectives. Forget about your own wants and needs for the moment, and make every interaction about the other person. In order to resolve conflicts, you have to alleviate yourself from yourself, so let go of your own desires and demands, and become relentlessly giving to everyone else.
2. Don’t rebuttal.
Of course, a strong-minded person like you will not agree with everything that others believe. While you feel like making a counter, please keep quiet and continue to listen. Going on the offensive is simply not conducive to achieving the end goal. Instead of rebuttaling, look for triggers, implications and most importantly, opportunities for collaboration. Even when you absolutely have to make a point, start with what you and your opponents agree on. Then, contribute your opinions but only if they actually help with reaching a resolution.
3. Focus on the solution.
Focusing on the problem gets you nowhere. The point of conflict resolution is to come to a resolve and come out better than before. So focus on the end goal and how delighted you will feel in the end. If you and your opponents can come out with peace, lessons learned and stronger relationships, you not only walk away with an education, you walk away with trust.

4. Deal with one issue at a time.
Sometimes one single conflict is related to a web of other issues. This entanglemnt makes it easy to overcomplicate things, leading to feelings of anger, resentment and negativity. To avoid this, do your best to resolve one issue at a time, rather than trying to resolve everything at once. The issue at hand should be your priority, so keep everything else outside of it. After getting that one small success, tackle another, then another and so on. But first, make sure that you achieve that one initial success.
5. Treat others with respect.
Everyone deserves respect, even your arch enemy. In fact, your opponents deserve more respect than anyone else, because they have the guts to come forward and address their issues to your face. Give your opponents your utmost attention, use professional language and demeanor, and apologize when you should. It takes a lot of courage to confront someone; and if you are a little scared, they are too. Therefore you are on equal ground, and you should treat each other as equals.
Parting Thoughts
Without occasional conflicts, you will not have a truly healthy relationship. The key is to manage and handle conflicts correctly, immediately and respectfully. From home to school to the professional setting, conflicts provide opportunities to grow, learn and evolve. Understanding, practicing and mastering strategies to resolve conflicts in both the work place and in personal life can provide great value to your life. It takes time, effort and tenacity, but will be well worth it in the end when you become a stronger, wiser and more inspiring leader.
1) Turn Enemies Into Allies and Master The Art of Peace in the Workplace (Conflict Resolution for Leaders, Managers, and Anyone Stuck in the Middle)

2) Master the art of negotiation with the classic, Getting to Yes: Negotiating Agreement Without Giving In

3) Pin this article!
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