The High Road: 3 Tips for Managing Conflict

By Julie Leonard

As a Life Coach, people frequently tell me about problems they have with someone and ask me  how to deal with it. The fact is where there are people there is conflict.

It’s a part of life. Conflict arises wherever there are interactions – at work, with friends, between partners, within families.

And most of us don’t like any kind of conflict and therefore don’t handle it well. Many want to avoid it or deny it is there which doesn’t make it go away but instead creates more possible conflict. Sometimes people try to resolve it using power to win at the others expense. Or people subtly manipulate the other person to get what they want.

This is because we often fear conflict and see it as negative. But I would like to suggest that in fact, when handled well, conflict can be seen as an opportunity for mutual growth, the strengthening of a relationship and to  bring closeness and respect.

I haven’t always handled difficult situations well in the past (and I’m still working on it) but let me share with you my 3 useful strategies for coping with and resolving conflict:

1. Take a Mindful Moment – pause, breathe and don’t immediately react. Take the heat out of the moment, create some distance between the situation and your emotions and take time to listen to how you feel and gather your thoughts.

2. Be more kind – see the situation from the other person’s perspective. Be empathic to the other person and let them know that they have been heard.

3. Use ‘I’ statements – talk to the person about how you feel and own your feelings. It reduces the chance of the other person becoming defensive.


Julie is hosting ‘Managing Conflict – 5 Communication Techniques for Successful Resolution’ on 21st March. Email for more info


Julie is a Life Coach with over 25 years of Psychology, Health and Coaching experience. Über Moms enjoy a 10% discount on all Life Coaching sessions. Find out more at

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