HCOM 214: Interpersonal COMM & Conflict

Learning interpersonal communication skills to improve every part of our lives

Managing Conflict And Power

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My results from the self-quiz ‘How do you approach Conflict’ are about what I expected. I agree that, in general, I approach conflict with a collaborative approach. I will often try to work with someone to find a solution that is beneficial for both of us, or exchange information to aid in effective problem solving together. That is typically my approach to conflict, but there are certain times or situations where I’ll use other approaches, such as competition or avoidance. If it is a subject that I know someone feels strongly about and talking about that will not help the conversation in any way, then I find it better to use the avoidance approach. And sometimes, occasionally, I will use a competition approach in less important situations or conversations.

I do agree that I’ve seen the Dyadic Power Theory in practice with certain people before, but the best example I can think of is my dad. My parents divorced when I was young, and ever since then they’ve shared a joint custody agreement where I’ve spent half a week at my mom’s and the other half at my dad’s. I also have two siblings, so between us we were moving back and forth, and living in, two separate households. This is complicated further by the fact my dad lives about 20 minutes away from my mom’s house, and his house is in the middle of a forest, far away from my friends, school, and an actual town. And then as my siblings and I have gotten older, my dad has fought even harder to keep us, and all our belongings he’s ever purchased for us at his house. But seeing as his house is out of the way of everything else that goes on in our lives something like that is incredibly difficult to manage. At the moment my brother is less than a month away from turning 18, and my dad is trying everything he can to convince my brother to continue going to his house. My sister, who just turned 16, has just gotten her own car and driver’s license, and my dad has to work even harder to get her to continue spending time at his house because she no longer has to rely on him for transportation.

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