In Conflict, Is Your Focus Wrong?

Do you hate the idea of handling conflict and confrontation with those you work with? Most of us do, and most of us are unprepared for managing it because most of us are focused on the wrong thing. Let me explain.

When Things Go Sideways Fast
One of the things I truly cherish as a mom right now is the time I get in the car with my kids on the way to school and daycare. Yes, it would be easier and faster to put the two big kids on the bus, but the hassle of doing it myself is well worth the reward of face-to-face intentional conversation with them before I release them into the wild to start their day.

We listen to music, we sing and dance, we pray, we talk with one another. It’s amazing. Well, until it’s not. Like today. LOL

I needed a break after the car ride before I walked into work this morning. If you’re a parent, have you been there before or is it just me?

My big kids started arguing in the car as we sat in the drop-off line. They were going at it hard so I had to use my “mom voice” to get their attention. #IYKYK

I had to step in.
And before you can even let the thought of “helicopter mom” enter your mind, I’m all about letting my kids fight their own battles.

What Are You Focused On?
However, our team (Van Hooser, party of 6), was torn up from the floor up and making no progress towards a solution because they were focused on the wrong thing.

It was time for some reframing…
I showed them that the problem was not each other, but that the problem was a misunderstanding. They had different experiences and expectations for what was happening at the moment.

Reframe the Conversation & Step Up
Reframing the conversation to focus on the problem — not the person — changed the whole vibe in the car. They became patient while the other person spoke, choosing kind words. Both of them figured it out quickly…and thankfully, they both went into school with happy hearts.

Just like my kids in the car, sometimes drama at work happens when we’re too focused on the person and not the actual problem. And when that is happening, the situation can become volatile quickly and the damage done is long-lasting.

Maybe today is the day you step up as a leader to reframe the conversation so you or people on your team can all figure it out and move forward quickly with happy hearts, too.

© Alyson Van Hooser  All Rights Reserved.


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