What's Your Motivation?
What's Your Motivation?
Actors and thespians are notorious (at least on TV) for saying, "What's my motivation?" We may not say it out loud, but there are probably times when we ask ourselves what our motivation is. Maybe you think of motivation to get out of bed in the morning, or motivation to make it through the end of the work day on Friday, but what about your motivation to manage conflict in a healthy and effective way?
There are two factors that affect our motivation to manage conflict well: 1) capability, and 2) willingness. Capability involves the skills you've learned for managing conflict as well as past experiences that influence your perception of "normal." As one of my professors used to say, "Normal is baked into the biscuits and gravy." meaning that rules and expectations are learned in the family of origin from primary caregivers. Expectations and rules are defined and reinforced through rule violation, discipline, and positive or negative reinforcement. In other words, there is a substantial amount of informal training about how to deal with conflict. There are also opportunities for formal training in conflict resolution from elementary school all the way through graduate school programs like the Duncum Center for Conflict Resolution (www.acu.edu/conflict). So while capability is one significant factor, an equally important factor of motivation is willingness.
What would you do for a Klondike bar? (in my case, a lot). What's it worth to you? These kinds of questions seek to discover the amount of value we place on things, people, and/or relationships. The things we consider the most valuable will determine where we spend our time and energy. I heard a minister once say, "tell me what you think about most often, and I'll tell you what's most important in your life." Seems obvious, but it's also important to remember in our willingness to resolve conflict. How much more willing would you be to resolve conflict with those around you if I offered you $1000 for each effectively resolved conflict? How about $10,000? Well, you're out of luck 'cause I don't have that kind of money, but I bet I got your attention.
So, what’s it worth to you to have peace in your life and in your relationships? Do you have the capability? What have you learned about dealing with conflict when it arises? If you want or need more formal training, we can help. If you have not been willing to put the proper time and effort into creating more peace in your life, take a moment to imagine what your home, your workplace, your church, your community, and what your life would be like with more peace. So, what's your motivation?