Re: Advice on resolving conflicts
From: sharon (
Date: Thu, 4 Mar 2010 05:35:08 -0800 (PST)
> An anonymous poster wrote (via Fred):
> We have an individual with whom I have trouble relating and I think
> community members do also.  We have not been successful in dealing with
> this situation.  It seems like "resolutions" to specific conflicts have
> not adequately dealt with emotional aspects and that people come away
> harboring bad feelings about each other.

The seemingly obvious approach is to deal directly with the person and
seek intervention related to that person. The systems approach would be to
look at the context. While here are dysfunctional people who are responding
to things that are inside their heads, something is triggering this person
to react in ways that others find difficult. I find for myself the
situation and what I'm telling myself about the situation is at least 75%
of my reactions and responses.

My big one is having policies in place that are ignored. Some people
believe that rules are there to be bent and I think they are there to be
followed unless one explains their intention not to follow them for a
particular reason and if necessary seek to have the rules changed or
modified. Our failure to address rules or non rules as a community causes a
lot of conflict.

Another is that everyone cares about something different. Things that are
small things to one person may be very important to others. Understanding
this can be helpful -- remembering not to tell people that what they are
concerned about is petty.

So one approach is to look at what is happening around this person. He or
she may be the canary that is responding to something dysfunctional in the

Sharon Villines
Takoma Village Cohousing

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