As much as it’s about studying and getting a degree, being at varsity is also about learning how to be an adult in a world of other adults. The way you interact with others is important, as it determines how smoothly your relationships go, and whether people will want to work with you in future.
Unfortunately, conflict will arise from time to time – it’s completely normal. It’s how you respond to these conflicts that matter. No one likes a negative person who complains a lot, and even if you feel your complaint is valid, you risk being labelled a trouble-maker if you don’t handle certain situations correctly. So here’s a 101 on how to deal with conflict – the mature way:
Step 1: What’s bugging you?
Your first step is to try and work out what exactly the problem is. What caused it? Ask yourself, “When did you start to feel angry?” “How did the incident begin?”
Step 2: Look further
Sometimes, it is not the incident itself, but your perspective on it that causes you to become upset. Perhaps there was a small problem that happened ages ago, but you brushed it under the carpet. Not speaking out when something first upsets you can cause subconscious stress to build under the surface, which can cause you to feel irrational antagonism to the person involved. In such cases, you need to prevent yourself from lashing out at them aggressively, as this will only make you look like the one in the wrong.
Step 3: Solve it
After discussing the problem calmly with the person involved, ask for solutions, and try to find some yourself.
Step 5: Agree
Once you have found a solution that suits both of you, shake hands on it.
Whether your conflict is with a lecturer, a fellow student or a boyfriend or girlfriend, remaining calm and following the above steps is a surefire way to get you on the path to a peaceful resolution. Fights and unhappiness to not have to be a part of your life if you don’t want them to be.