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Let Me Show You…

Let me show you the world in my eyes – Depeche Mode
Conflict, both good and bad, is a fact of life. If conflict is spun for good, the result can be great sporting events where two finally tuned teams create a spectacle for the ages. Too often, conflict turns bad. The conflict of two parties when unchecked can grow like concentric circles until the conflict encompasses groups, cities, countries resulting in tragedy, murder, wars, death.Conflict, when unresolved, keeps people from interacting effectively. Walls go up, bunkers of stubbornness are created to keep the other out while, ironically, also keeping the builder trapped within.

I have seen unresolved conflict destroy teams when either of the parties in conflict refuse to view from the other’s perspective. I have witnessed a situation where two key people on a team are in conflict and the conflict was dragging down an entire team. The resolution plan of one is to jump ship to a different team. This will put a band-aid on the problem but do nothing to address the root cause. A root cause not addressed will fester and continue to poison until it consumes.

I have discussed the situation with one of the persons in the conflict and, during our discussion, noticed an inability, possibly an unwillingness, to view the situation thru the eyes of the other. The eyes could not see past the bunker, could not see that there was a possibility the other’s view may have some hint of validity. The bunker was silently voiced as I am right so the other person must change.

What if one of them tried to change their own actions? What if they adjusted their behavior to what was wanted of the other? Would the problem have been resolved? Possibly not. Possibly yes. I can’t pretend to know if the problem would ever be resolved.

But I do know that the person who tried to change would see the world differently. I do know that the person who tries to see from another’s perspective is more open to alternative views of reality. I know this because I used to view life only through my own eyes and expected everyone to conform to my view of reality. Living…not living… existing this way I was lonely and alone.

Once I began attempting to see another’s perspective a new world opened up before me. Black and white became shades of grey then hints of color. The colors grew gradually more vibrant then became vivid. Life is now a kaleidoscope of ever changing colors and patterns of unending wonder which brings me joy each and every day.

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