Why do we get into conflict? In my understanding of the world, conflict comes into our lives when something is ready to be healed. Our subconscious mind attracts a conflictual situation to heal and move forward. The conflict comes not from this subconscious part, but from our ego-self, the part of us that seeks safety.
“I don’t want to change! I’m happy how I am! Please, stop!”, she says. She is afraid. She likes the familiar. She wants you to be safe.
But what we know now is that if we don’t process this conflict, we will cycle in and out of the same conditions that bring us this specific type of conflict until the wound is healed.
I want to offer a solution to this hamster wheel of suffering:
We shouldn’t seek to be conflict-free because conflict is actually freeing.
Instead of ignoring or soothing, get into it. There will always be problems in life. Concerns. Disappointments even.
Every solution, every resolution, will eventually lead to a new pain point. This is what it is to be a meaning-seeking, ever-expanding human being.
But what is conflict really about? Generally speaking, it is when we perceive that one of our core needs aren’t being met: safety, love and connection, significance. We want to be heard. We want to be understood. We want to matter.
A short list of the benefits from my own personal experience and that of my clients: deeper intimacy, a strengthening of self, a new understanding of our partners/friends/selves, a freeing of past trauma, an expansion of the heart, an expansion in spaciousness, a letting go of things that harm us, a leaning into things that give us life, enhanced trust, enhanced peace… the list goes on.
The benefits of communicating with an open, loving heart in moments when you want to do the exact opposite far outweigh the momentary discomfort it brings. I know this because I was a chronic conflict-avoider/soother, and I’ve made it to the other side!
Stay tuned for the next few weeks to learn more about conflict skills from the new paradigm: how to warm up to conflict, how to centre oneself + stay open-hearted, how to communicate in a conflict… and more!
I’m doing this new thing. I’ve come to the end of the rope with some of my self-destructive habits. I knew it was time to make a change when I slipped from anger to apathy. It happened in the process of trying not to beat myself up for slogging away in the same old ways and attempting to show myself a bit of fucking compassion. It back-fired. Instead of compassion, I absolve myself of my own actions and quickly became apathetic… and pathetic.
This might sound a bit bizarre, because self compassion and understanding is something that I work with clients on. But, it’s also very very human. We all have days in which we just bury our feelings in chips. Or bludgeon ourselves with ridiculous storylines about how immensely and profoundly fucked we are to not be able to JUST. Get. Our. Shit. Together.
In those soul searching nights, I’ve been searching for the secret button. The secret refrain or hack that was going to take me from conscious awareness to my desired next level: Habit Busting Mastery: Level Infinity. This could take me from knowing the places I desire growth, and choosing growth over stuckness every dang time. With ease, preferably on the beach- cocktail in hand.
So I’ve been on this quest and I’ve come to understand, finally and begrudgingly, that there is no secret pill. And perhaps, there is no Habit Busting Mastery: Level Infinity.
But I have learned a couple of things and I’m experimenting with my methods. I invite you to do the same. Here’s what I have up my sleeve:
And then I thought to myself, what if I truly accepted that this was hard for me. Not because of me, but because it’s hard. And what if I truly accepted that I cannot do this on my own. Overtime, I’ve seen that I operate well in a container. A container that is designed and held for me, by someone else. A 21 day detox, an exercise program, an external challenge with external accountability, a coach. And what if I decided that not being able to do it alone was okay. And further to that acceptance— what tools can I use to support myself from a place of strength and resilience?
I’ve decided that I’m a puppy and am trained through reward. I’ve done the research, and I know that I am not motivated by fear or consequences. The pain method? Hard pass… I just get angry. So from this knowing, I’m designing my own rewards system. And like a puppy being trained, I am not holding a grudge or making up some story about how if I were a real grown up I could do this on grit and enlightenment alone.
I’ll be implementing my super-science-sophisticated points system around here in a few days so check back in and hold my feet to the fire!
Does any of this ring true to you? Do you reward yourself with gold stars? If so, how? Inspire us all with your brilliance in the comments below.
Do you need a little help with some of your habits? Let’s work together. I’ve got a few free 45minute sessions available. Book yours here.
This blog is a part of the #braveblogging project from Makeness Media who are awesome.