No matter how deep or loving our relationships, occasional conflict is unavoidable. But how fairly do you fight? Take this quiz to see if you or your loved ones hit below the belt in an argument, or if you know the rules of healthy conflict resolution, here:
Answer the following questions TRUE or FALSE:
1. I try to echo back what my partner is saying. That doesn’t mean I have to agree with it.
2. We often bring up the past when we argue.
3. I try my best to speak from my very deepest truth when I argue, even if that reveals how scared or vulnerable I am.
4. It is not unusual for us to call each other names when things get really heated.
5. It’s important for both of us to empathize with one another, no matter how strongly we feel about our own position.
6. After we’ve had an argument, only one of us feels better, or neither one of us feels better.
7. After we’ve had an argument, we both feel better: the air has been cleared.
8. I can get pretty accusing when I argue: “YOU did this, YOU did that.”
9. I try to confine myself to stating my feelings when I argue: “I felt this when you did that.”
10. The most important thing in an argument is to win and be right.
11. The most important thing in an argument is for both of us to feel heard and understood.
If you answered TRUE to odd-numbered questions, your conflict resolution skills are healthy and strong. You are to be commended!
If you answered TRUE to even-numbered questions, you might want to read one of the many excellent books on communication skills and conflict resolution so that your relationships can flourish.
By Cait Johnson, Managing Producer, Care2 Green Living.