You go out for a night on the town. You’ve planned on hitting up a few spots with your friends. You all considered heading to Ball & Chain or possibly Bardot. You know you want some music, drinks and food. It will be a fun night with friends. You are looking forward to it after your long work week. You hope to relax and have a good time.
You never go out expecting to encounter a frustrating situation. When you are in a crowded place, sometimes people cause problems. The involvement of alcohol can intensify poor judgment and cause quick reactions.
As you go out to enjoy your night, you can be proactive in your conflict-management thinking. If you and your friends run into issues with other individuals, try these tactics.
- Try to remain calm. You don’t want to escalate the situation by losing your cool. If you can, you should be a calming agent for your friends. It can be hard to remain calm—especially if the other party involved is not.
- Analyze the situation. You will want to see what triggered the situation. See what emotions are involved and react accordingly. This may mean talking out the conflict with the other party. It may also mean walking away to avoid violence or outbursts.
- Listen to the other parties and what they have to say. If the other party is willing to talk, listen carefully to their point of view. You don’t want to minimize their feelings. If you listen closely and respond accordingly, you may be able to come to a resolution.
- Think before speaking or reacting. If you are quick to speak or react, you may escalate the situation. You may also misinterpret what is happening and cause more problems.
- Separate yourself from the problem. If the situation seems unsafe, walk away. If the other party is unreasonable or is quickly escalating, remove yourself from the situation. You don’t want to ruin your night by staying in a toxic situation.
- Work together as a group. Make sure you and your group of friends are on the same page. You can work together to find solutions. This may mean that you relocate or change plans. You will want to put safety first and look out for the well-being of one another.
- Don’t get swept up in drama. It could be easy to become engaged in the conflict. If you become engaged, you may let your emotions get out of control. Don’t let your night get overrun by unnecessary conflict.
- Focus on preventing any escalation. Even if you disagree, you will want to try to keep things from escalating. You don’t want violence or aggression to arise from the situation. This could be a safety risk for you, your friends and anyone else in the vicinity.
You may want to talk about the situation after you’ve had time to process what happened. You can take steps to navigate your anger or emotions regarding any incidents.