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22

The Root of Conflict

Posted by Collaborative Counseling

Everyone has conflict in life. It is natural for us to have some conflict and arguments with others. Do you ever find yourself struggling to identify the root of a conflict?

What Causes Conflict?

Angeles Arrien, author of “The Four Fold Way” suggests 3 reasons for conflict:

  1. Not saying what we mean
  2. Not doing what we say
  3. Not saying what is so when it is so

Here are some ideas to consider when working to solve a conflict you may be having.

Not saying what we mean

  • Speak your truth! Get clear on your intention; ask yourself “what is my goal here?” Once you have that figured out work to speak your truth without blame or judgment.

Not doing what we say

  • If you commit to something, honor those commitments or communicate changes that may occur. When you don’t follow through on what you say you do, you damage the relationship. Trust or lack thereof can cause immeasurable damage to any relationship. Be a person of your word.

 Not saying what is so when it is so

  • Don’t hold back truths out of fear. Get clear on your goal/intenet and say what is so with love and care. When we communicate concerns or issues, we cast light on them and without light it can be hard to find the way out of any problem.

The next time you find yourself in a conflict, take the time to reflect on the situation and try to identify the cause of the issue. Then, you can work towards changing the dialogue. In addition, by using the ideas above, you may find yourself having more mindful and honest conversations when future conflicts arise.

For more information on “The Four Fold Way” check out our Relationship and Personal Growth page!

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11

Learning To Co-Parent

Posted by Collaborative Counseling

Essentials For Effective Co-Parenting

Developing healthy co-parenting practices can be very difficult between two parents where conflicts exist. Co-parenting is something all parents must do, which is learn to parent with someone who has different ideas for how to raise a child. In families of divorce learning to co-parent your child or children can become even more difficult.

It is important that parents work to be as consistent between their two homes as possible. There will of course be different levels of co-parenting in families of divorce. There are a few components to co-parenting that are very important. In the “Good Enough Co-Parenting Model” we work to teach about the four most important areas that parents must learn to be able to talk about. To raise a child between two people, parents must be able to discuss matters related to:

  1. Education
  2. Behaviors
  3. Health
  4. Schedule

Some parents are able to learn to discuss even more areas, but these are the most important areas that parents need to be able to plan and work through in order to raise a child together.

Getting Along

Working to decrease conflict is important in families of divorce. Decreasing conflict is important for many reasons including:

  • The more conflict between parents, the more stressful divorce can be for children.
  • The level of fighting between parents is an indicator of how well a child will adjust to divorce (e.g. less conflict leads to better adjustment for the child).
  • It helps to reduce the amount of “splitting” or “double-lives” children are forced to lead.

While you don’t need to be best friends with your ex, learning to get along and discuss matters related to your children is going to improve the health of your entire family.

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02

Moving Towards Change

Posted by Collaborative Counseling
Move towards Change

Change Is Difficult

As almost all people know, it can be really hard to change! When we think about ways to move towards change, some ideas work well and others not so much. Here is a list of routes to change from least effective to most effective (according to Ann Betz, coach and poet).

Some Ways We Try to Make A Change

  • Ignore the problem – pretend everything is okay, push the feeling aside… This is NOT effective
  • Control the environment – make sure you don’t encounter stress. Helps a little but most stressors are unavoidable at some point
  • Name emotion – short venting. It’s great to name the emotion, however we still haven’t gotten to problem solving.

Effective Ways to Make A Change

  • Put attention on what’s important – explore what fulfills you. Here we get clear on our intent for ourselves and for our lives, this is important groundwork for the next steps!
  • Reframing – learn to look at things from a new angle. Now we are able to look at problems with a bit more objectivity and find new, healthier ways of thinking.
  • Mindfulness – learn to be in the here and now, get present. Often with depression, anxiety and other issues we are living in the past or the future. Learning to be mindful involves staying present to what’s going on right now. Until we learn to stay present, change can be hard to come by.

We are all guilty of trying to use the first few methods to make changes in our lives, even when we are aware that they are ineffective. Instead of utilizing these ineffective methods, think about the above routes to change and how you can move yourself towards the bottom few ideas. Using these tools will certainly move you closer to the change you desire. If you are seeking more guidance on changing your thinking visit our website to learn how we can help https://www.collaborativemn.com/counseling-services/individual-counseling

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