#3 Conflict Resolution & Probelm Solving


There are lots of decisions to be made, problems to be solved and conflicts to be resolved. Some are big and lots are little. They make up a large part of relationships – throughout life. There are lots of tools and models out there, so look around and see which ones make sense to you.

Guiding Questions for Conflict Resolution

There are some questions that you can ask yourself that will be helpful in most settings involving significant conflicts, decisions, or problem solving. These questions can help you get ready to solve a problem, resolve a conflict or make a decision. They will vary in their importance from situation to situation.

They help avoid just being reactive, which is one of the major pitfalls.

  • Am I ready to deal with this problem, decision or conflict in a way that protects or improves the relationship?
  • How emotional am about this situation – do I need to step back a bit?
  • How important is this to me – to others?
  • Do I really know what the conflict or decision or problem is about?
  • Do I need more or better information?
  • Can someone else help?
  • Do I understand what is important to me (my interests)?
  • Do I understand what is important to the others involved (their interests)?
  • Have I/we generated enough options to decide, solve or resolve the issue?

This is a relationship competency that is pretty complex and can vary widely in its nature. It is a competency that builds with experience, but it is one that usually requires some training in order to get good at it. The questions above can be very helpful, but this is a topic where it is in your best interest to get some training – the more the better. You can find some online, your school or community organizations may offer it or you may have to look further afield to find it.