The Energy of Conflict - Part 1
When there’s a lot of drama and conflict between two parties, we have a tendency to say we’re at our wit’s end or at the end of our rope. Little do people know how true that actually is. From an energetic standpoint, we are all connected. If we look at a spider web, we see all the different strands that hold the web together. Think of these as cords of energy and each person we come into contact with is another silky strand. Some will be short relationships and the strand will fall away naturally. Others will be longer lasting and that energetic cord between people is super strong and difficult to break.
What can we do to prevent disastrous outcomes before they happen? A huge piece of that is seeing it coming and having open communication. No one likes conflict and although it may be out of your comfort zone to really say what’s on your mind, it’s better than not saying anything at all and having regrets for the rest of your life. Would it be easier to have this discussion if you had some tips on the right words to say to help diffuse the negative energy?
My friend, Nancy Gabriel is a Mediator and we talked about real scenarios and the role energy plays in conflict. There were a number of important points and “Aha’s!” that came up during our discussion as we were able to look at the same situation from different perspectives. Here are some excellent tips to remember when dealing with conflict, drama, and the dysfunctional energy behind it all.
Listen to Each Other
When there is conflict between two parties, instead of throwing barbs or accusations, ask questions. If it still feels like you’re not on the same page, try reframing your questions and try to get to the actual emotion. For instance, Nancy likes to use a reframing technique when she recognizes that someone may be emotionally challenged. If she can tell that the person is angry and having trouble articulating that emotion, she may say to them, “You seem ambivalent about this issue.” To which they may reply, “I’m not ambivalent, I’m angry.” By doing this, it allows them the opportunity to go through their toolbox of emotions and choose the one that best describes what they mean. This helps to quell the fire by allowing them to feel like they’re being heard.
Energetically, finding the right way to express what they feel allows the energy to continue to flow. Once it moves and clears from the body, they are then able to let go of the emotion. In this example, continuing to be angry may have led to holding a grudge, which could end up manifesting itself as stress, anxiety, depression, fear, or physical ailments.
What Are They NOT Saying?
It’s also important to listen to what they’re not saying. That in itself can hold a lot of clues. Let’s take a case between two sisters who are fighting. One of them may say to the other, “You seem upset. What did I do now?” If we pick that apart, the first thing that jumps out is a defensive tone from the first sister. She’s automatically assuming that the other one is upset with her when in fact, it may be something completely unrelated. It may be that the second sister was just having a bad day and is unconsciously taking it out on her sister. A way for the first sister to reframe the question would be to say, “What’s going on?” (in a calm tone) and then asking, “Tell me more.”
The “Tell me more” piece is the critical one, especially from the energy view because it helps get down to the real root of the issue. Once you get the root and clear that, you are free from the toxicity that energy brings. It also stops the first sister from manifesting any additional anger, resentment, or pain and, if she allows herself to look within, she will see that there’s something larger going on within her. That knowing will give her an opportunity to process those emotions she’s stuffed down and find peace.
Why Do You Ask?
Another way of diffusing conflict is responding to a question with a question. As Nancy pointed out, especially if the question is inappropriate or unclear, by responding to the question with, “Why do you ask?”, you are allowing yourself a little more time to answer and also allows the other party to reframe their original question or state the intention for asking. You may be completely surprised at their answer because it wasn’t at all close to what you were assuming.
From an energetic perspective, you’re keeping the energy positive or neutral and allowing that energetic flow to continue its normal course. You’re also setting up communication guidelines and shows the other party your intent is to be perfectly clear and nothing will be assumed. Having this mutual respect will set the boundaries needed to keep focused on the end result instead of being disrupted by drama.
Check back next week for Part 2 of this article.
If this article resonated with you or you have questions, would like more information, or know you have energy to clear in your existing relationships, please feel free to contact Ann M. Bordeleau at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 603-318-1154. You can also follow Ann on Facebook and visit her website: www.annmbordeleau.com
For any mediation inquiries, please reach out to Nancy Gabriel at Mediation Around the Table, LLC. www.mediationaroundthetable.com at Nancy@mediationaroundthetable.com or 702-561-8754. You can also follow Nancy on Facebook