Have you ever felt conflict about what to do? What I mean is when one part of you wants to eat cake and sit on the couch, but the other part of you wants to go to the gym. So then this whole debate starts going on in your head.
You start thinking I should really go to the gym. But the other part of you is thinking ‘Hmm but that cake is really nice and it’s not that big and I did go to the gym yesterday. Well, I parked outside and thought about it’. Or another example is if I get up early on Saturday and do my tax return I could have the rest of the weekend off, but actually, I deserve a sleep in it’s the weekend I will get it done later. And later, becomes the night before the tax return is due.
Often it feels like there are two voices, two characters, inside your head, wrestling with each other. Yet these parts make up you. This conflict makes us feel anxious, stressed and unsure of what to do.
So you decide not to go to the gym and eat the cake instead. But now you are beating yourself up because it’s the second day in a row you didn’t go to the gym. So you don’t enjoy the cake, and the whole time you are eating the cake you are nagging yourself. You don’t even taste the cake and the should haves start.
So what do we do? Well, we can look at those two parts of us, just like you would if you were mediating between two people. Talk to each part and ask what do they want?
I recently had a client, let’s call her Jude. She was conflicted because she believed she needed to work harder at her business, yet she knew when she relaxed and enjoyed herself things flowed. Yet her business went in fits and starts because she couldn’t let go of her old ways of sitting in her office and working for the sake of working. Jude started enjoying her work less.
How To Resolve Conflict Inside Of You
So how do you resolve conflict when it is inside of you? Well just like you would when you negotiate between two people.
1. Work out where do the two sides agree? So look at both parts and work out what their positive intention is. For Jude both parts wanted a successful business they enjoyed doing.
2. Now start by asking yourself where are those 2 parts in or around my body. For some people, those parts may be a position in their body, or they might even take on a certain character.
3. Then you need to go to where they disagree. You do this by talking to that part of you, ask it. Then start asking questions of each part what do they want, and what do they want from each other. So as I said for some people they can feel the conflict inside of them or around them. And their hands will take up that position like this. Say in front of the solar plexus and maybe in the head. What you will find as you talk to each of those parts of you slowly, but surely those two hands will automatically come together.
Talking to the Two Conflicted Parts
So here is what Jude’s two parts wanted.
A was the Timid Not Confident side I don’t know what to do It’s not going to work for me.
B’s like ‘Go get the work. What do you mean you can’t do it?’ But B was actually frustrated and prone to panic.
A is like ‘Ok well tell me what you want me to do’.
B is like ‘I want action’.
A says ‘So okay pick targets. Put a plan together on how we are going to engage. In the meantime lets continue doing what we do well’.
B was like ‘Yeah that’s great and don’t over promise. Just say what’s on the tin. Be yourself. You’ve got this. You’re good at what you do’.
And they start to come together with a plan and they are even now encouraging each other. From that Jude got a plan to move forward because the two parts of her were aligned, rather than fighting.
A & B were in conflict with each other but they had the same intention. So it is mediating with those parts of you as you would 2 people.
So next time you feel disgruntled or conflicted, ask those conflicting parts what do you want? What do you want from the other? What have you got to lose!