Sparring is a perfect metaphor for conflict. You are duking it out with a cohort because you both are working to obtain similar things. Sometimes you stay calm, other times you escalate. You both want better skills, success, and self-efficacy.
In sparring, it is to be better, to have weaknesses exposed so they can be addressed. That’s the hardest thing to remember in the moment……..we don’t like feeling weak and associate it with thoughts of ineptness. But, what better way to gain strength than to go into ones fragility open eyed and welcoming? It’s a great exploration.
In life, conflict with a comrade is typically about wanting the same thing, each with a different method. We all want our voices heard, our opinions to matter. We all want to feel important and to belong.
We just get a little hung up in how we measure up and against others. We forget that humanity is inclusive……we all evolved to walk this earth and accomplish survival.
You can get better at conflict before, during and after. You can improve your skills in the heat of the situation. You just have to be willing to hear hard truths, to be wrong, to be open to other avenues and you have to be willing to be supremely uncomfortable.