Tuesday, 20 May 2014

Understand, but Don't Fear Your Opposition

Don't Fear Your Opposition
photo credit: Elijah via photopin cc 

  The reality of life is that we all find ourselves in opposition to others at some point in our day. There's no point in hiding from it. It doesn't matter if you're a politician or a Buddhist monk. Conflict is a part of life. Learning how to deal with it is essential.

When we think of conflict we usually picture some violent confrontation. Two combatants in the ring, or two armies at war. These are certainly some of the more extreme examples of conflict, but conflict is not always violent. 

When we apply for a job we are in conflict with the other applicants, although we will likely never meet them. When playing a game we are in conflict with our opponent. Conflict need not be violent, but it generally does imply a winner and a loser. Don't shrink from this. It's simply a fact of life.

Many of us find it hard to handle conflict. We try to avoid being in opposition to others at all cost. Conflict is considered a dirty word. Well it's not. Not everyone can get the job you're applying for, it's just a simple fact of life. Someone has to win the game, but there is a way to win without developing animosity between you and your opponent.

Be prepared to lose. Nobody will win at everything they do, so accept that. If you go into a situation with the recognition that losing is a possibility, and that it's not the end of the world, you will learn not to fear your opposition.

When entering into any type of conflict situation make sure you've properly prepared yourself. Research the situation. In a nut shell, do your homework. If you do, fear will no longer be a significant part of the equation as you've done everything you can.

Fear generally results from the unknown. If you've done all you can to prepare you will no longer fear your opposition. This doesn't mean you will always win, someone has to lose, but you will be at peace knowing you did everything you could and it just wasn't your day. If you approach life in this way, you'll be successful more often than not.

How do you handle conflict? Is it something you shy away from? Do you have a unique technique that you use to deal with conflict? Leave a comment. I'd love to hear from you.