This article was originally published on PhiladelphiaMFT.com. Be sure to check out their site for professional relationship and sex advice. 

As much as we try to avoid it, conflict in relationships and life situations comes along with the human experience. There’s no getting around them, so the best way to get through them is to face them head on. This topic of the week focuses on the three reasons why you should face your conflicts head on:

1. It develops & solidifies conflict-resolution skills.
You can read as many self-help books regarding ways to improve your conflict-resolution skills as you want; but the best way to learn is to actually….face conflict. Putting into practice what you’ve learned is the only true way to master your skills.

2. You’ll feel better afterwards.
Even if you handle the conflict in a not so graceful way, the anxiety you felt previously about the issue will be gone and sometimes the anxiety alone is more torturous and harmful to yourself and the conflict than the issue itself. Most of the time we get worked up for nothing and the handling of the conflict goes over better than we imagined in our head.

3. You’ll learn a lot about yourself.
The human journey is all about growth and development and we learn the most about ourselves when we are under pressure. Learning how conflict impacts the way you function and behave interpersonally as well internally is a powerful tool to be used. You can utilized what you’ve learned about yourself to improve your behavior when in the mist of conflict.

Being willing to handle conflict head on is a challenge and we are often filled with anxiety, fear and dread when met with it. However those challenges grow us, making our relationships with ourselves and others better in the long run. If you feel as if some conflicts are just too big to manage on your own, feel free to reach out to Philadelphia MFT for more information on how deescalate and improve conflict in you life.

Alanna Gardner, MFT is a sex and family therapist practicing in Philadelphia. She is also a main contributor to TheUrbanRealist. For more advice and encouragement from Alanna follow her here.

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