A conflict situation can be made worse by:
- The words you use – swearing, dismissing people, insults and put-downs.
- How you say them (your tone of voice) – obvious anger and aggression, sarcasm, talking over the other person, shouting loudly, or being patronising or dismissive.
- Body posture –an aggressive stance (preparing to fight), squaring up and standing too close. Also appearing uninterested and as if you are not listening.
- Gestures – finger pointing, rude gestures, patting someone's head and signalling aggression (‘come on’)
Conflicts which are allowed to continue can lead to:
- Arguments getting worse, making a resolution much more difficult.
- Tactics becoming more destructive, such as threats, violence and displays of emotion (anger).
- More people getting involved.
- Relationships and friendships breaking down.
- Less respect for those involved.
- Difficulty in communicating.
- An intense desire to win the argument.
- An intense desire for the other person to lose – e.g. making the other person suffer becomes the priority.