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Conflict Resolution from Within

By Carolyn Kalil

Ever wonder why you get mad at your best friend? Do you often wonder why someone is mad at you? Let's take a look at our inner game and see how it influences our outer world.

I'm going to use the workplace in this example because it's easy to relate to. In my past field, Information Technology, the many IT groups I've worked with always had a bit of tension among their staff. The tension may have come from miss-communication, jealousy, greed or sometimes from non-verbal communication. There may be clicks within a department. In some groups one person maybe singled out and discriminated against, but more often there are several different groups, each of which wants your vote.

How does this start and how do you break this cycle?

I've seen it start where one person or group doesn't think highly of someone. This may be related to conflicting personalities - or temperaments. You could have one personality type ticked off at anyone who is different from them. It doesn't matter if the "others" get their job done, they didn't do it the way this type wanted to see it done. As a result, the individuals in this group will create a story of why the other person is wrong. This is called projection. We project our opinion, or our story, to make the other person wrong and us right. We are always right, no matter what. The "wronged" party may feel the animosity from the accuser, but has no idea why. They just know that sides have been drawn and they often choose not to challenge this "story."

There are several exercises I use in workshops to change this. They all have to do with forgiveness, but only self-forgiveness. It's not about the other person. It's about forgiving yourself. You can be right or you can be at peace.

Holding a grudge or being mad at a co-worker may not do anything to the co-worker but it will take its toll on you. It's always in your best interest to release this and let it go. Clear your channels so something good can come in. As long as you hold onto these negative feelings, you've blocked the way for all the good that is just waiting to come through. The good is always there. It's always ready to enter, ready for us to use. We just put up road blocks and forget why or what they're for. Sometimes, the reason isn't even important, just something we made up. When one person releases and heals, the whole group heals. I've seen such dramatic shifts with simple release techniques.

Once we fix our inner game, success and harmony show up in our outer game.

Carolyn Kalil, MA, is author of the popular book "Follow Your True Colors To The Work You Love" plus two career workbooks. She has been a career counselor for 30 years. Take her free personality quiz to discover your own True Colors.
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