Advice from Students and Teachers to Deal with Conflict



Whether in your homes, in your friend groups, or even at your workplaces, conflict is everywhere. By dictionary definition, it means a serious disagreement or argument, typically a protracted one. And I’m sure by a lot of your definitions in your head it is compressed into a very short word: Trouble. Conflict is typically associated with fights, tears, and a lot of us either try to avoid it at all times or when faced with it, are completely lost on what to do. Conflict is part of being human and as a society, we’ve accepted that it happens, but it’s labeled as something we should avoid. 


What if I told you that conflict can sometimes be a really good thing?

Students Share 


First though, before we can answer that question, you need to learn about how exactly conflict can be dealt with, which two of our students at IUPREP can help assist you with. This will show you that you’re not alone in your frustration and that conflict really is common everywhere, even with people you might not even expect!

When asked about the conflict in her life, Lainey, our News section editor, said “[she] deals with fights with [her] friends in steps” and that they “usually talk about why [they’re] in disagreement then look for ways to resolve it. “ This is an amazing technique to not only process the argument in an orderly fashion but to also communicate thoroughly with each other. 


Emily, our Associate Editor-in-chief, also gave her input saying that “when dealing with fights with friends it’s important to know what the issue is. And to try to think of it as both of you against the issue.” Here she is explaining that oftentimes, we bump heads with our friends, instead of bumping heads with the actual issue on hand. Emily continues to comment that, “Some friends are great for a season of your life but not for long term and knowing the difference can really help!” 


The Teacher’s Take on it


If you feel skeptical about our student’s input, then know that our teachers say very similar things about how to deal with and approach conflict! 


One of our IUPREP Journalism teachers, Mr. Cram gives us some amazing advice, saying “the best way to solve conflict is through communication, openness, and willingness on the part of both parties to compromise.” He goes on to talk about how you should communicate, allow vulnerability, and when compromise is made then both can “get some of what they want.” Conflict resolution is one of the hardest parts of the conflict itself. Compromising and giving something up will allow the other party to also give something up in order to resolve the issue. In shorter words, If you’re stubborn, then it’s most likely that they will be stubborn as well. 


Finally Mrs. Beakley, a health teacher at IUPREP, also shares her thoughts on conflict. When asked about how she deals with conflict in her regular life she says that “[she] tries to remain calm and not let [her] emotions take over.” and she also avoids the “discussion from turning into a blame game.” Mrs. Beakley then happily gives some advice to students, saying that they can use it to positively impact a disagreement. “Listen to the other person… Take a deep breath and respond calmly… Apologize for your part in the conflict or issue.” 

Why is Conflict Crucial? 


So, after you’ve read all our amazing responses from IHOOT staff and students, you might be starting to realize that conflict isn’t that scary after all. It’s always going to be hard to deal with, but at least now you know some tactics and strategies to handle it appropriately: both during and after. So then we come back to the question of how exactly conflict can be good. The answer is in the question. 


Conflict tests relationships, bonds, and most of all help us grow every time we’re able to appropriately deal with a situation. Our relationships grow stronger when misunderstandings and tension are talked about in a healthy way and without conflict in our lives, growth isn’t able to happen. That’s the thing about real life. 


Without falling once in a while, you’ll never be able to grow a thicker skin.