Have you ever introduced two friends from different facets of your life – and then they started dating?

I have.

It’s pretty cool when it happens, especially when things are going well.

However, when challenges start to arise and the relationship isn’t going as smoothly, things can get tricky.

Because what often happens is that both parties will come to you with their problems and each of them starts talking about the other person.

Now you’re stuck in the middle of a conflict and left with two choices:

  1. Get involved
  2. Stay out of it

What would you choose?

At first glance, you may feel inclined to say, “stay out of it”; however, I think there’s a lot to be gained by considering the first choice, “get involved”.

When you “get involved”, it doesn’t mean that you need to give advice, or share your two cents, or add to the drama.

In fact, it’s the opposite.

When you’re in the middle of conflict, you have a huge opportunity to simply observe the situation and not say anything at all.

You can show up and just listen, nod your head in a supportive manner and through this simple gesture, let each person know that you hear what they’re saying.

If you do feel inclined to say something, you can simply say, “I hear you”.

It’s amazing how simple and effective this can be. You’re choosing to “get involved” and keep yourself clean from their conflict at the same time.

In this week’s video, I talk a little further on how to use the power of neutral observation to help others and yourself through conflict: 

Using observation as an approach to resolve conflict is something that you may consider using at work. It actually saves you a ton of energy because you don’t have to fix anything. You don’t have to give advice. You can simply let the person(s) know that you’re present and supportive by saying, “I hear you”.

Perhaps you already use this approach. If not, I encourage you to give it a try. See how it feels. Let me know how it goes.

Have a great rest of your week.