Working with People Who Avoid Conflict

If you’re afraid of strong emotions or if you insist on finding solutions that are strictly rational, your ability to face and resolve differences will be limited. When conflict is mismanaged, it can cause great harm to a relationship, but when handled in a respectful, positive way, conflict provides an opportunity to strengthen the bond between two people. Whether you’re experiencing conflict at home, work, or school, learning these skills can help you resolve differences in a healthy way and build stronger, more rewarding relationships. The first step is simply understanding what avoidance coping is and why it has become part of your life.

Weaponized Incompetence: What It Is and How It Impacts Relationships – Verywell Mind

Weaponized Incompetence: What It Is and How It Impacts Relationships.

Posted: Fri, 30 Jun 2023 07:00:00 GMT [source]

A guide to difficult conversations for people who hate confrontation

Avoidance coping involves trying to avoid stressors rather than dealing with them. Think through—and perhaps write down—the best way to cope with a conflict before reaching out to the other person or people involved. In particular, to get a broader perspective, consider how your actions—or inaction—might be affecting them. For example, you might practice reminding your boss about your boundaries and that they agreed to your boundaries in the first place.

Interpersonal Conflict Resolution: Beyond Conflict Avoidance

Situational avoidance refers to staying away from people, places, things, or activities that feel activating to you. This is a formal symptom of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), like a veteran who avoids the outdoors during a holiday firework display, or a mass shooting survivor who avoids crowded public spaces. There are times when you avoid people, places, or things because you know already know how the situation will turn out (and it’s not good).

  • The other broad category of coping is called “active coping” or “approach coping.” This type of coping addresses a problem directly as a means to alleviate stress.
  • Analyzing a situation before it reaches a point of no return amounts to no wasted breath and no harm, no foul.
  • Many of my clients yearn for a better relationship with people they “should” be closer to.
  • Vulnerability can improve emotional intimacy as it can help your partner understand you better.
  • When you really listen, you connect more deeply to your own needs and emotions, and to those of other people.

Toward Interpersonal Conflict Resolution

If you don’t know how to stay centered and in control of yourself, you will become overwhelmed in conflict situations and unable to respond in healthy ways. You may be feeling nervous about angering or disappointing the person you want to speak to — “this is normal, and emotions are very normal,” Wehrman says. “It’s just part of our body’s reaction to stress.” She suggests preparing exactly what you’ll say and then considering a few potential ways the other person might respond.

You see a confrontation on the horizon and you dive for cover, because really, who wants to deal with stress from conflict? “Not wanting to upset others is a common driver of conflict avoidance,” says Sherese Ezelle, L.M.H.C., a licensed behavioral therapist at One Medical. You might know that you need to tell your bestie that no, it’s not OK to cancel your plans for the how to deal with someone who avoids conflict fourth time in a row with no explanation. Spinelli highly recommends therapy for people who tend to avoid conflict because it can help you understand why you avoid conflict and practice conflict-management techniques. This anxiety might cause you to avoid or sidestep important conversations. During confrontations, you can try to practice anxiety-management techniques.

a person who avoids conflict

  • Let’s say you want to remind your boss that you don’t answer work calls after 5 p.m.
  • For example, eating, shopping, or having an alcoholic drink might make us feel better in the moment but they have long-term consequences if they are overdone.
  • Enneagram Fours, the Individualists of the Enneagram, react to confrontation from a place of authenticity.

What is conflict avoidance a symptom of?

Using humor in conflict resolution