Conflict resolution refers to the process by which a peaceful termination of conflict is realized. Relationship conflicts can be critical and defining events, and approaches to conflict management can either support or undermine a relationship. Although resolution implies the ending of a conflict, the concept of conflict resolution needs to embrace the idea that conflict is not only unavoidable, but also a critical, recurring, and defining part of most relationships. Understanding sources of conflict, and then emphasizing appropriate approaches and tools to deal with conflict, supports outcomes that deepen understanding and strengthen connections between people. This does not involve avoiding conflict, but rather approaching its resolution with a “softer edge” that supports a less polarized, more productive outcome. This entry describes sources of conflict in ...

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