Conflict: Opportunity, or Drama (The COD Cycle)

Compassion goes deeper than we know or think, and certainly deeper than how it’s practiced.

Compassion is more than just empathy, caring, and concern for another person. Check out my fb post about it & let’s connect over there. Literally, compassion is “co-suffering,” or being deeply connected with peoples’ journey through life’s trials and tribulations, aka: conflict.

Conflict doesn’t have to turn into a World War 2 re-enactment. It doesn’t automatically mean being at-odds. It simply means being incompatible or in variance. What we do with that incongruousness turns conflict towards the positive or the negative.

Conflict can be an Opportunity for growth, or it can mean Drama for all those involved.

Drama means to struggle against with destructive outcomes. The opportunity to grow & show compassion means to struggle with for creative outcomes. Doesn’t that second one seem a WHOLE HECKUVA LOT BETTER??

Positive outcomes are preferable. As a certified mediator, I know that on an academic level. As a human being, I know this in my guts, my cells, as well as my brain.

So, how do we come out of conflict on top? How are we supposed to resolve human conflict in constructive ways? How do we synthesize multiplicity & continue harmoniously?

Recognize the two possibilities out of Conflict: Opportunity, or Drama. Then, use the COD three-step method to achieve the desired outcomes:

  • Commit to Compassion. Committing to compassion says, “We are in this together.” That’s already a step towards the positive, as it re-frames the sides less as enemies & more as co-conspirators in a resolution.
  • Open Up to Opportunity. Since it takes two to tango, we must be willing to give and receive info. Giving opens the door to being understood. Being open to other viewpoints creates empathy. The give-and-take creates a partnership crucial to seizing the opportunityto succeed.
  • Demolish the Drama. Negative outcomes can’t be an option. Misusing the energy of conflict is a non negotiable no-no. Once a situation becomes dramatic–tense, new, stressful–it’s a sign to go back to the first step & go through again, using the first pass’s progress as a platform, to reach newer, deeper levels.

Organizations that either actively or passively encourage drama fail to implement strategies, like the COD Cycle. They don’t talk openly or deal directly with conflict. They try to avoid failure instead of leveraging it for growth. They don’t hold people accountable without attacking or blaming them.

Pro-COD organizations use these strategies. Engaging the characteristics promoted in the COD Cycle are part of successful, drama-free organizations’ cultures. It is embedded in their policies, procedures, and rules of engagement which provide consistency & accountability.