An explosive disagreement with a friend or family member is never a pleasant experience. No doubt when there is a clash between two or more there are things said, insults exchanged and even sometimes an engagement in fisticuffs. Regardless of the reasons for the altercation, in the days, months and hopefully not years to come you will either be the peacemaker, the fence dweller or the recipient of a friendly reconciliation. Any of the three positions will be awkward until the feud is completely settled and the mending of fences have taken place. The more sincere of the resolution, the better chance for real harmony. The peacemaker has the active role in the resolution. Whether the peacemaker is at fault for the tiff or not, by adopting this role, this person has made a choice for peace and is therefore demonstrating that the relationship is worth salvaging. The other two roles are passive and can either be receptive to the proposition for a squashing of the beef or continue to harbor negative feelings.

Not everybody can have peacemaker qualities

Extending an olive branch is not just being the bigger person, but it is also about understanding your role in the altercation, taking self inventory and admitting where you were wrong. There are times when the damage is too big and the hurt was dug too deep.  In this case, time and space are best so that the salt in the wounds dissipate and heal.  When the best possible result occurs, the parties are able to amicably sit down and discuss their feels. In some cases it is best to enter into this sensitive time with a friendly mediator. Your mediator should be a non bias go-between that has the best interest for both parties and ultimately would like to see peace and harmony. Going into this setting, both sides should agree to not rehash the disagreement but to move forward while acknowledging the opposition in views. This all sounds very sterile, professional and pre planned but this is what is needed to chop up the beef and prevent another incident from occurring.  Since all is fair in love and war, dwelling on the things that were said and less on your parameters for the future are counterproductive.  An agreement for both sides to respect and consider each other’s feeling in the future is appropriate and highly suggested.  There may even be a joke or two at the reenactment of the showdown and there is nothing wrong with poking a little fun at each other just as long as it doesn’t end in another brawl!

Fight, feud. forgive and come out better people