Conflict, Stress & Holidays – Oh My!

It rained all night and the result for us was a peaceful night’s sleep.  “It’s a great way to relieve stress,” my husband declared. What stress is he under, I thought, but it had been a long time since we’ve slept through a rainy night. We live in the desert and rain here is rare.  

I’m writing this in late September, just after the devastating storm named Florence battered the east coast. Don’t tell people in the Carolinas that rain is peaceful and relieves stress, unless you want more conflict. We know better – we’ve lived through hurricanes and can understand and appreciate a different point of view.  

One of the keys to managing conflict – and alleviating stress – is the ability to listen to different points of view.  As we discuss in The Essential Workplace Conflict Handbook, we all have different experiences that shape the way we see things and events around us. Hurricane season is devastating in coastal areas. The summer monsoon season, as the rainy season is called in the Southwest, is welcomed with open arms.

There are more stressful seasons descending upon us. Halloween? No, it will be fun even with the ghosts and goblins and other dark creatures. But then we prepare for Thanksgiving – families gathered around the table. You’re concerned that after the upcoming mid-term elections your right-wing and left-wing relatives won’t keep their political differences civil and are hoping your outspoken brother focuses his attention and comments on the football game rather than offending anyone. 

You may take a pass on Black Friday, but there’s still the stress of holiday gift giving – selecting the perfect gift for everyone, purchasing it, and wrapping it.  

Barbara and I have a gift suggestion, and we'd be honored and humbled if you'd consider it.  We published two books on conflict, The Essential Workplace Conflict Handbook and The Conflict Resolution Phrase Book. They are available from Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and independent book sellers. Both address topics of diversity, differences and expectations among others. It could be the perfect answer for those relatives who can’t get along or a gift for your colleagues or clients not only at the holidays, but at any time during the year! These books are a good reminder that conflict can be addressed with grace and civility.

Look no further, you can order both books online. To ease the stress, we’ve added links.  The Essential Workplace Conflict Handbook: and The Conflict Resolution Phrase Book:,

Free up your time this holiday season for the decorating, baking, partying – whatever you love, but can’t seem to find the time, to do. Fill this time with wonder and light and excitement before the gloomy days of winter, not stress and conflict. 

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