Conflict Management Coaching Blog by Cinnie Noble
One way that some of us cope when we are in conflict is to criticize the other person for something he or she is saying or doing. Criticism takes many forms. For instance, it may be by being condescending, pointing out and putting down things we don’t approve of, finding fault when things don’t suit or fit our perspective, ignoring the person or demonstrating a dismissive attitude, being sarcastic about or correcting things the person says, and so on. Criticizing in these and other ways often results in conflict.
At those times we choose criticism as a defense, we are likely unable to separate the person from the problem; we let emotions drive conflict; and we tend to choose blaming and criticism to make or ‘win’ the disagreement. Criticism for whatever reason derails an even-handed conversation.
Criticizers may lack self-esteem and feel more powerful by being critical. They may even be deflecting other matters, including some truth and contribution that is hard to admit. Criticizers may genuinely dispute the other person’s viewpoint but do so in a way that demonstrates intolerance, lack of flexibility, and a need to be right.
If you tend to criticize, this week’s ConflictMastery™ Quest(ions) blog asks you to consider the last time you did so, to be able to explore this inclination further.
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