Our greatest support system in life is often our family.
They have known you the longest, and you feel the greatest attachment to them. And family will generally do anything they can to help you out. But what about a family that is dysfunctional (and yes, all families are dysfunctional to some extent.)
How do you deal with overcoming obstacles in life when you don’t have the support of your family? And worse, what do you do when your family becomes the obstacle?
How do you deal with the negativity that comes from family conflicts…and how do you prevent it from negatively affecting your results with the Law of Attraction?
First of all, many family conflicts arise from simple misunderstandings. Many of us just don’t give our families the same understanding and patience we would give strangers.
This is a mistake. The people who love and care for you the most should get even more respect and understanding.
The first step in resolving a conflict (and this goes for any conflict, not just family), is to put yourself in their shoes.
So here’s a quick exercise that you can do with a partner to really understand them better.
It comes from martial arts practice, but it has a lot to teach us about relationships.
Here’s how it goes:
- Have a partner reach out and grab your wrist with both of his hands.
- Now try to get out of it. You are totally focused on your wrist, right? Your first instinct is to struggle to move your wrist somehow, and that means you stay exactly where they want you to be.
- But you have another option. When the person grabs your wrist, leave it alone. Pivot instead, and turn your body so that you are standing side by side with the other person.
- In this position, it becomes easier to throw off the attack.
Now, do the same exercise, just add words. As the person grabs your wrist, have them say something like: “I’m sick and tired of you always…” or “I can’t believe how stupid you are,” or something equally provocative.
And instead of fighting back and calling names…just turn your body and say, “I understand,” “I hear you,” or something else that acknowledges that you are not looking for a fight, you’re looking to resolve the conflict.
This doesn’t mean that you automatically “lose” or that the person will walk all over you.
Exactly the opposite! Instead of adding more fuel to the fire and making the conflict bigger, you are cutting it off before it turns into a big fight.
And if you want to think about it in terms of the Law of Attraction, you are using the Law of Attraction to turn a potentially negative situation into a positive one.
Let’s take a perfect example of family conflict: a parent trying to get their kid to go to bed. Most of the time, these arguments end in the parent saying “Because I said so!” and the child crying, screaming, or throwing a tantrum. You don’t need that kind of negative conflict in your life.
But you can choose to do things differently, if you simply change positions, so that you are “side-by-side” with your child instead of head-to-head against them.
Here’s how you can handle the situation better:
- The parent asks the child: “Why would you like to stay up later?”
- The child answers: “I just want to finish watching this show on TV. It’s only 15 more minutes.”
- The parent responds: “I just want to make sure you get enough sleep. But if it’s only 15 minutes, you can finish watching and go right to sleep after.”
- The child is happy with the arrangement and promises to go right to bed after the show is over.
Now, if this seems too perfect to be true, believe me, it’s not. All it takes is a little extra understanding and respect—and a desire to see a positive outcome. Because yes, positive things can come out of conflict. Conflicts that result in better understanding, more communication, and improved relationships—instead of shouting matches—are actually positive.
But don’t fall into the trap of avoiding confrontation and being passive aggressive. You may think things are great because nobody’s fighting…but under the surface there are tensions boiling that will burst out when no one expects it—usually at Thanksgiving dinner.
The lesson here is not to be afraid of conflict—but to use it to achieve something positive.
This week, use the exercise above to demonstrate what I mean. Use it with your family members so they get the point, too. Resolve conflicts early, before they fester. Because that negative energy, especially within your family, WILL attract more negative energy.
And that’s exactly what you don’t want with the Law of Attraction!
So make peace with your family, no matter what the conflict may be. It’s worth it!