React or Reflect

“Conflict is inevitable, but combat is optional.”
-Max Lucado

When was the last time someone told you: “You messed up!”

Maybe it was your spouse, your kid, your boss or a business partner?

Were you defensive? Or were you open to the feedback?

How you responded probably had a lot to do with how they delivered the message. If a message is delivered out of anger, it’s hard to listen openly and the receiver will typically react with defensiveness and anger. The conflict escalates. But what if the deliverer OR the receiver of the message followed Steven Covey’s advice to “seek first to understand.” We go from reaction to reflection. Struggle to solution.

People often react to conflict out of fear, anger, frustration, ego, stress, etc. Let them, but don’t jump on the train with them. Instead, follow Mother Teresa’s advice below – it is easier said than done.

“People are often unreasonable, irrational, and self-centered. Forgive them anyway.
If you are kind, people may accuse you of selfish, ulterior motives. Be kind anyway.
If you are successful, you will win some unfaithful friends and some genuine enemies. Succeed anyway.
If you are honest and sincere people may deceive you. Be honest and sincere anyway.
What you spend years creating, others could destroy overnight. Create anyway.
If you find serenity and happiness, some may be jealous. Be happy anyway.
The good you do today, will often be forgotten. Do good anyway.
Give the best you have, and it will never be enough. Give your best anyway.
In the final analysis, it is between you and God. It was never between you and them anyway.”

BJ Kraemer
President, MCFA