How to Maintain Order and Combat Creeping Chaos
Before you head into a tense situation, be aware that conflicts aren’t always meant to be resolved. All you can do is try your best to reach a mutual agreement, but if you can’t reasonably have your terms met, then there is no point in compromising for someone else’s benefit. Any situation that is surrounded by controversy is bound to be full of chaos. Cutting through that chaos requires a great deal of organisation and a level head.
The circumstances may differ, but it is a normal human experience. In the workplace, this is can be about dealing with clients and coming to a compromise, or trying to settle differences between colleagues. Whatever the case may be, it all starts with keeping a calm demeanour. Even if the other parties involved are not approaching the situation with the best frame of mind, it will do you no good to mimic any abrasive behaviour.
How you cope with is determined by how you organize yourself. After all, the opposite of chaos is order, so maintaining order is a way to combat creeping chaos. That simple principle will guide you through difficult situations. Instead of looking at contextual elements and emotional reactions, look at the situation as a puddle of water that simply needs to be mopped. You are just trying to clean up the mess. Cleaning up the mess will require specific tools, like a mop and bucket. And, you may need some help to get it done. While you need to be mindful of those affected, trying too hard to please everyone will exhaust you.
With that mindset, you can now create a plan for execution, but keep in mind that a framework is only as good as how well you stick to it. If an elaborate structure is too burdensome, then you’d avoid following the systems you put in place. However, if it is too casual, you might not feel any obligation to follow it at all. Solving conflicts, especially complicated ones, might require the simplest of things. Don’t underestimate the power of simple thoughts or actions. All these things do is reduce the unnecessary dressing that may cause further problems.
The next thing to do is to relieve any animosity. Conflict can easily be aroused from miscommunication so deal with that first. Look into areas where details could have been distorted and changed. It is also a good place to see if any party has been deceitful.
Once you have been able to identify the motives of each party and settle any misconceptions, you can now encourage participation from everyone for a resolution. Giving everyone a fair chance to be a part of the solution they want everyone to abide by.
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