Do you ever get a sickening feeling in your stomach when you know you’re going to have an awkward conversation later? Do you feel anxious when you know you need to deal with confrontation? It can be really uncomfortable challenging people’s behaviours and ‘having a word’ with them, but it doesn’t have to be. Confrontation is a part of life and often, particularly within friendships or the workplace, it has to happen. I know it can be awful to deal with confrontation, so try following these five tips for handling it little better:
Is it worth it?
Consider whether the issue really deserves a confrontation. There are things that you just cannot let slide, but make sure this is one of them before you risk making things awkward with this person. Figure out what, for you personally, deserves confrontation. You don’t want to become a confrontational person about everything, as you will lose the respect of others. Make sure it’s worth it.
For most of us, confrontation is discomforting but is something we need to get over. Confrontation is something that has to be enforced in most work places. So, whenever, I’m feeling anxious about confronting someone, I make sure I take some time to relax and visualise an effortless conversation with the person. I make sure I visualise the conversation as respectful and as if it’s going really well. Heighten your expectations by imagining the message will be received positively by the person in question.
Confrontation is not an opportunity to be judgemental towards another person. Be sure to express your issues to the person you’re confronting and tell them specifically what’s bothering you. Communicate what your expectations are and why. When you communicate as specifically and respectfully as possible, you usually get them on the same wave length as you, and they’re willing to improve.
A lot people don’t realise that confrontation is often about listening. Miscommunication is caused when we don’t set expectations for how the other person will behave and we don’t listen to the other person’s issues. You have your own problems to raise, but have you considered that they’ve had things on their mind too? You might learn that the employee who is always late is having some medical issues or is struggling to find accommodation close to work. You might be able to find a middle ground that both of you can meet at. Once you confront someone, you have an obligation to listen to what they have to say about it.
I hope this helped you to deal with confrontation a little easier. What tips do you have? Comment what I’ve missed below!