What to do, what to say? When navigating conflict, many of us struggle to find the right words and actions to take us safely and effectively through the critical moments.
Often the problem comes when conflict catches us off-guard, says Kathy Mangold, author of the Amazon bestseller Confidence in Conflict for Everyday Life.
“By functioning in an engaged state of awareness, you have enough facts to act decisively when the time comes,” says Mangold, whose book covers the professional strategies known as Verbal Defense & Influence.
Here are five tips for practicing better decisiveness in times of conflict:
1. Always be alert: Staying attentive, yet relaxed, tunes you in to potential conflict.
2. Be realistic about conflict: You can’t prevent bad things from happening if you’re in denial. Acknowledge them as a possibility and preprogram your response.
3. Find the balance between preparedness and overreaction.
4. Recognize that your level of alertness drives your ability to act decisively.
5. Train yourself to respond, not react, to conflict.