How to Successfully Handle Confrontation

We communicate everyday. We communicate differently with different people, we communicate to get our points across, we communicate to get something we want, and we even communicate to have difficult conversations. It is definitely not easy to have a conversation with someone under uncomfortable pretences. Confrontation is the prime example of this. It is a skill that doesn’t come naturally to people, but it is a skill that is learned overtime with experience. Confrontation can be uncomfortable and nerve wracking, yet it can also be rewarding and beneficial.

There are two sides to everything, and with confrontation, you are either being confronted or confronting someone. Being confronted can make you feel small and uneasy, especially when the other person is just sitting there talking about whatever issue there may be. In the moment, it is best to remain relaxed and allow the other person to finish what they are saying so they can pay the same respect to you when you share your perspective. Remember, you may feel like you did something super wrong, but in reality, the person cares a lot about the relationship to have the courage to speak to you about a problem. Afterwards, the feeling of doing something wrong may linger. Do not over think it, though. Once the conversation is done, then it is done, and overthinking will just cause unnecessary stress. Even though being confronted may seem like a negative thing, look at the bright side: a problem is being resolved, you will become more self aware and your communication skills are actually improving. If anything, this is the type of conversation that you will learn something from.

Confronting someone can be equally daunting. Before having the tough conversation, you may have a lot of nerves and are probably thinking about how to say something in the best way. During the confrontation, you may feel anxious and even feel bad, especially if you are confronting someone you care about. Afterwards, if the confrontation went well, you will have a feeling of relief. After having this kind of conversation, I recommend touching base with the person a day or two later to make sure there is no bad blood between the two of you and that you both are on the same page. If the confrontation went a bit haywire, then I suggest clarifying anything you have said or trying to see the problem from the other person’s point of view. Analyze how the confrontation went, but again, do not overthink it. My biggest piece of advice to avoid a bad confrontation is to think with a clear mind prior to it. Make sure you have your thoughts together and that there is a true reason for having the confrontation to start with.

It is a myth that confrontation causes more problems. If anything it helps alleviate any unspoken tension and issues between people. Confrontation can help both sides: the person who is confronting and the person being confronted. It can help both people work on their communication and listening skills, and it also help them be vulnerable in an uncomfortable situation. Overall, think before you speak, and be open and honest with the other person.