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Mindset/Strenghts Personal Growth

5 Things I Learned From Overcoming Conflict

Conflicts are a normal part of life and they tend to happen in virtually every setting. Oftentimes, we avoid conflicts because they make us tense and anxious.

They bring up a lot of self-doubt and discomfort, which typically results in raised voices, increased heart rate, and saying things we don’t really mean.

Even worse, it leads to feelings getting hurt and, sometimes, to relationships being destroyed. No wonder we hate conflicts!

That’s why learning how to resolve conflicts peacefully can be life-changing. In fact, the more we expose ourselves to conflicts, the better we handle any situation, which helps us become more resilient.

So, to help you address conflicts the right way, here are five things I learned from overcoming conflict.

1. Teaches Us to Respect Other Viewpoints

The reason there’s a conflict in the first person is that there are two opposing viewpoints. But most times neither side gets heard properly, which leads to an altercation, even escalating to major problems.

This is why negotiations are so important, even if you’re confronting a loved one. It shows that we’re willing to be flexible and more open to accept the other person’s opinions.

Of course, that certainly does not mean that you must agree with them. It just means you have to be willing to learn how to be prepared to accept them and move on.

2. Gives Us a Chance to Verbalize Our Needs

People often take for granted who we are as individuals, even those closest to us. This stems from our lack of verbalizing what it is we want or need.

So, we carry grudges and bottle everything inside until we can’t take it anymore. That’s when conflicts arise.

The best thing you can do for yourself is to look at conflicts as an opportunity. It gives you the chance to voice your opinions and share your feelings. As a result, you become less fearful of asking for what you need.

3. Improves Our Communication Skills

Being a good communicator requires patience and self-control. As with most things in life, the more you practice good communication skills, the better you become.

And the best way to practice is through confrontations, no matter how hard they may seem. Yet, you have to look beyond the fear and be willing to share our thoughts and feelings in a calm, collected way.

You’ll quickly realize that the right words just flow out. So, when the need arises, you can prepare for what lies ahead.

4. Makes Us Better Listeners

The key to overcoming conflicts is to be a better listener. Many times we’re so focused on what we’re going to say next that we don’t really pay attention to what the other person is saying.

That’s not the way to successfully win an argument or resolve a conflict.

To do that, you have to learn how to do things. First, you have to control your impulse to react and blurt out things haphazardly.

The second thing is to learn how to actively listen when someone talks to you. It’s through listening that you can gain a better understanding of the speaker, which enables you to make smarter, wiser choices.

5. Opens Our Eyes to New Ideas

One of the ways conflicts can be a useful tool is by allowing you to fine-tune your opinions and ideas. As different thoughts are expressed, how you look at things changes slightly.

When you hear someone talking about their viewpoint with regards to a certain topic, you can’t help but clarify your own. You either start modifying your opinion, or you become even more convinced of yours.

A third option is to take part of your ideas and part of theirs and come up with a whole new concept!

That’s the beauty of conflicts. They allow you to generate new ideas and mold new perspectives.

Then, when you realize there are more similarities than differences, you forge a bond. This bond leads the way to establishing trust and enhancing networking. Case in point, it just makes both sides better human beings.

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Relationships

5 Signs You’re In An Abusive Relationship

There’s a common misconception about anyone in an abusive relationship. People think that it’s easy for the abused to know they’re in a bad situation. People assume it’s easy to move away from the abuser and start a whole new life.

Sadly, that’s far from the truth. Before we begin our article, there’s something important you have to remember. Abuse is all about manipulation and power.

Read on to find out whether or not you’re in an abusive relationship.

Signs You’re in an Abusive Relationship

Abusers are known for placing the blame on their victims. They create confusion and guilt, which they hide behind things like ‘protection’ or ‘playfulness.’

Does this feel like something you, or someone you love, are experiencing? If you answered yes, you have to realize this isn’t how a normal relationship should be.

Read the signs below. If you recognize any of them, it’s time to take action.

1. You Feel Pressured to Do Things

We all know the age-old love story of two people seeing each other’s eyes from a distance. Somehow, they know they’re meant for one another, and they can’t wait for their relationship to start.

An abusive relationship has traits very similar to that of this whirlwind romance. In the beginning, you’ll notice that an abusive partner is sweet and considerate. They’ll have plenty of nice things to say that make you feel like you’re special and truly in love.

You may feel that the words are nice, but they usually have a concealed urgency. This urgency is their way of gaining control over you as quickly as possible.

Do you feel like you’re getting pressured to start a relationship, get married, or have children? This can be a telltale sign you’re in an abusive relationship.

2. You’re Always in the Center of Their Impulsive Mood Swings

Mood swings are natural. We all have them for one reason or another.

What’s not normal is having to endure abrupt mood swings that come out of nowhere. Your partner may be sitting there all calm and nice. Then something triggers them off. They become insulting and furious for no reason.

After a few minutes, they return to their calm self. Not only that but they’re apologetic and swear to you they were only joking. These minute-to-minute changes in behavior create confusion and guilt.

There are two things to remember when you’re in a similar situation. One, this isn’t normal behavior. Two, this isn’t your fault in any way.

It’s important that you’re aware early on that this is dangerous territory. This is the time to take a step back and evaluate whether you want to continue with this person or not.

3. You Constantly Get Blamed for

Abusers accuse their victims of anything and everything that doesn’t go their way. They usually throw out accusations and blame without any thought or planning. As a victim, you get used to hearing these accusations on a regular basis. Soon, you begin believing it to be true.

Take note of whether this happens to you in your relationship. If you notice it happening often, you have to put an end to it.

Another thing you have to pay attention to is whether your partner keeps tabs on you. Do they want to know you are at every moment of the day? While it’s nice to have that kind of harmless attention, it’s a dangerous pothole to fall into.

4. You’re Made to Feel Isolated

One type of control abusers have is to keep you away from your family and friends. They give excuses like, “They’re meddlers” or “They’re trying to break us up.”

The whole point of doing this is that they want to make you feel isolated. They want you to feel dependent on them and only them.

Another way they isolate you is by gaining control of your credit cards or bank accounts. Or maybe you can’t go where you want without their permission.

All these force you to rely only on your partner. This gives them more and more power over you while making you feel less and less in control of your life.

Isolation in all its forms is dangerous and should be dealt with promptly.

5. You’re in a Constant State of Fear

Abusers will rely on intimidation tactics to frighten you. This keeps abuse victims are always in a state of dread and uneasiness. You’re scared of upsetting your partner, or that could insult you, or even humiliated in public. Then, there’s the fear of being physically assaulted.

Fear comes in varying degrees. It can even take a toll on your physical and mental health simply by eating away at your self-confidence.

It’s worth noting that even if your partner hasn’t physically abused you in any way, just being fearful is a bad sign. Fear shouldn’t be part of any healthy.

A Final Note

It’s not uncommon for abuse victims to play down the severity of the situation they’re in. Their abusive partners have drilled into their subconscious that they’re powerless and worthless. They wear down their self-esteem, until they truly believe everything is their fault.

If these five signs sound familiar, tell yourself that this behavior isn’t acceptable. You don’t have to put up with any of it.

That’s the first step. The second step is to try and salvage the relationship. Give your partner a chance to own up to their negative behavior. They could have it in them to change for the better.

If they fail to do so, it’s time to walk away. That may sound easier said than done, which is why reaching out to friends or professionals for support can help you make this transition more smoothly. By getting the right advice and having a reliable plan, you can feel safer about finding a way out.

Categories
Mindset/Strenghts

5 Ways To Boost Your mental Health

Scientists tell us there are certain things we can do to improve our mental wellbeing. These techniques will help you feel more positive about yourself.

They teach you how to ride the lows and wait out the lows. Once you know that, nothing can stop you from getting what you want out of life.

Today, we’re going to share with you five ways to boost your mental health. Keep reading for more.

Connect With Others

Good relationships don’t need years to build. They can form in a matter of months, or weeks even. Plus, they don’t have to be an all-in, best-friends-for-life type of relationship.

Just talking to a neighbor or members of your church can have a great impact on your mental health. You learn to listen, empathize, and build a strong sense of self-worth and value.

Have you and a friend not seen each other in a while? Then, reach out and try to arrange a coffee date so you can get together and catch up.

How about your children or other family members? Why not try to set an hour during the day where you talk or play games?

We all know how social media has become an important part of our lives. And it’s made it easier to stay in touch with important people in our lives, especially if they live far away.

It’s good to text and chat on a regular basis. Just make sure technology isn’t replacing your face-to-face communications with people.

Learn New Skills

Learning a new skill or hobby can have a significant boost on your mental health. It’s an excellent way to meet new people and improve your self-esteem.

It’s nice to have a sense of purpose, other than your work. It means you have something to look forward to each day.

The problem, however, is many people complain they don’t have enough hours in the day. Luckily, though, technology has made learning more accessible.

Here are some of the ways you can use those high-tech gadgets you have to good use:

  • Sign up for an online course, like learning a new language or a practical skill like programming
  • Look for free video tutorials online to help you out with a DIY project
  • If you enjoy cooking, find healthy recipes and learn how to make them
  • Try a new hobby that challenges and entertains you, like painting, writing, or gardening
  • Learn to play a new sport or physical activity

Pay More Attention

We’re all guilty of not paying attention to people and things going on around us. We’re always busy with work or scrolling through our social media feed.

Learning to focus all your senses on the present moment can improve your mental well-being. It also boosts your mood and lowers stress levels. Experts call this type of focus ‘mindfulness.’

When you practice mindfulness, you enjoy the little things in life. Things like watching a bird soar overhead or taking in the nuances of nature are just two small examples.

When you’re in tune with the small details, you feel more relaxed and at peace. Plus, you start to get a better understanding of what makes you happy or anxious, which is a healthy way to approach life’s challenges.

Get Physically Active

When you do any type of physical activity, you boost your physical fitness, as well as your mental wellness. It could be a short 15-minute walk, an hour of cycling each week, or 30 minutes at the gym. You pick the activities that you enjoy and that make you feel good.

Then, once you start noticing the difference, you start to feel good about your looks. That’s when your confidence will soar through the roof.

In addition, your brain signals the nervous central system to release ‘feel-good’ hormones known as endorphins. These wonder chemicals trigger a positive response, which boosts your mood. They also reduce feelings of pain and anxiety.

Check out the following tips on how to get moving to boost your mental health:

  • Look online for free activities catered to your fitness level
  • Find local centers where you can dance, swim, or cycle
  • Try running with a ‘couch to 5K’ app or podcast
  • If you have a chronic health condition or a disability, there are many exercises and physical activities that can be customized to meet your needs

Give to Others

According to research, acts of kindness and giving are great ways to improve your mental well-being. The reason is that when we help others, our brains trigger the release of another ‘feel-good’ hormone called oxytocin.

This chemical promotes feelings of empathy and trust. It also makes us calmer, happier, and more inspired to do more.

Giving to others could be volunteering at a local shelter or helping out someone on a personal level. The point is to offer your time and energy doing something for other people. In return, you’ll feel good about yourself, knowing that you’re valued and appreciated.