No One Wins At War

Even when people mean well they can often do more harm. Human relations are a tricky business. Dynamics are lined with power and intentions, and that line between love and hate can flip after years of loyalty. And sometimes breakdowns are over just personal insecurity or lack of communication. As Mogul CEO Tiffany Pham says in her book You Are A Mogul, “Conflict is a crucial part of communication and connection. If you aren’t openly addressing your conflicts, you aren’t truly communicating and connecting.”

Sometimes it’s more about your own perspective than what the other person is even saying. When you aren’t openly listening, that is definitely the case. And even when you are listening, sometimes you are not even at a stage in your life to fully understand. We are all on personal journeys as well as one big communal one. Conflict is inevitable. It’s our ability to resolve our issues that define us not our propensity to have them.

No one wins at war. Some people thrive off of confrontational scenarios and others search out peace. Turbulent times affect us all at different points in our lives and what I have learned is that where you can put a ceasefire to the battle, do so. That applies to whether the battle is between you and someone else or just within you.

Some wars are fought and no one even remembers why. Some are fought on lies. Some are fought on hard truths. Words can regulate the waves of discord and de-escalate the chaos that comes with it. If that is your intention. Emotions can take the best of some people and politicians are not exempt from this. Entire platforms can be created in reaction to a candidate’s past hurts. Alignment with particular parties and movements are the same. I know that my affiliations politically have a relationship with my traumas and tribulations. You want representatives in office that can rectify the wrongs that were done to you. We vote in a similar manner. Emotions drive us to great successes and grave mistakes but logic can resolve those.

Conflict is often necessary for transition. It often signifies the shifting from one dynamic to another which can result in a new power differential. This can lead to discord and an onslaught of battles to be fought for the unforeseeable future. Where you can, avoid entering war. Wave a white flag before the battle has even begun. And if fighting that war is inevitable and you find yourself in the proverbial ring, put some gloves on. Protect yourself always but remember there is another person on the other side of those blows. That is where humanity steps in, and hopefully the opportunity for peace.

Sometimes the war is within yourself and as Lupe Fiasco says, “I can’t win if it’s me against me, one of us ain’t gon’ survive.” A battle with yourself is a challenge to overcome, not a place to get comfortable.

When you test the boundaries of love you wind up in another realm and that often involves a lot of struggle. We don’t all have the same crosses to bear but that doesn’t make your neighbor’s any less heavy than your own. Avoid war where you can but as Tiffany says be unafraid to communicate and connect to overcome it.

Remember words can de-escalate…sometimes all you had to do was use your words. And whether you start the war or not know that being a soldier is about knowing what you stand for.

I stand for peace; no one wins at war.

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