The Cost of Engaging High Conflict People

When there are high conflict people in your church and especially when they are on the attack, focused on you, there will be a cost to you. Here are some of the things you may be feeling and experiencing:

  • Anger

  • Hopelessness

  • Powerlessness

  • Self-condemnation

  • Frustration

  • Fearfulness

  • Dread

  • Incompetence

  • Avoidance

  • Inadequate

  • Abandonment

  • Helplessness

  • Resentment

  • Anxiety

  • Numbing

  • Loneliness

  • Betrayal

  • Isolation

  • Distrustful

  • Paranoid

  • Bored

  • Uneasy

  • Self-blaming

  • Shame

  • Ennui

  • Ineffectiveness

  • Self-loathing

  • Rejection

Next Steps: Connecting these feelings and experiences to the conflict and to your interactions with the high conflict person can be very powerful. It can help you reframe your whole understanding of things.

Consider how the relationship is touching your vulnerable spots. Consider why it is taking such a toll to engage these people from the inside out. It is generally easy to identify what is wrong with “them” and more productive to identify what is not working in us. Maybe talk this part through with a trusted friend away from the situation.

Sometimes we have these feelings and experiences and don’t understand the origin. If this is your experience then maybe you have given someone a pass. Maybe you haven’t identified someone as high conflict who is. Maybe it is time to reevaluate.

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