Minimizing Conflict at Work


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Updated: 8/31/2012 3:17 pm Published: 8/31/2012 11:53 am



Monday is Labor Day – a national holiday to honor the working man and woman. That got us thinking: How happy are you? Good health, positive morale, and increased productivity are all benefits of being happy with your job. One major predictor of those who qualify themselves as happy at work is: Do you get along with your co-workers? If that answer is NO, Carrie Little from Family & Children’s Services visited GDGC to discuss how you can increase your chances of getting along with your co-workers.

First, even though it might seem that you can’t get along with certain people, you CAN practice a few techniques to maintain your sanity. In effect, these techniques will help to manage those difficult co-worker relationships. The first of those techniques is to speak less, and listen more.

When you speak less and listen more, you tend to remove your need to become defensive. You are able to think more, and take things personally less. When someone is ranting at you, or accusing you of something, or just running off at the mouth in general…the more you listen and the less you talk you are better able to keep control of your emotions. Remembering always: Don’t Take It Personally!

Also, remember that you have the power to make your day what you want it to be. Your daily actions signal to others the level of personal respect that you hold for them. Understanding that what you do matters can increase your personal awareness and give you more control over the direct, indirect, or unspoken signals you send to others. It can lead you to make improvements in your relationships and increase your happiness at work. This awareness is the key to minimizing strife and hostility, and to increasing the courtesy and mutual respect all of us want from each other.

Especially sensitive to this time of year, avoid talking about politics at work. While a certain amount of political discussion at work is unavoidable, it’s not surprising that such talk often leads to heated and emotional argument. Political viewpoints often serve as umbrellas that cover a spectrum of deeply held personal beliefs that are formed by an individual’s religion, culture, upbringing, economic class and other influences. Be mindful that others think and act differently than you, and remember that mutual respect is key. Keep topics at work work-related, and you will find that you will be less stressed.

Family & Children’s Services has a number of classes to help people manage relationships in their lives and offers individual, couples, family and group counseling too. For more information, call 918.587.9471.

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