The Conflict Dimension


There are three problematic patterns in the Conflict Dimension—Conflict-Avoiding, Judgmental, and Defensive. You may click on each link to learn more about the pattern and then decide if you want to explore it, now or later.

The Conflict-Avoiding Pattern involves not bringing up problems that might lead to conflict and avoiding conflicts that other people bring up.

The Judgmental Pattern involves blaming the other person, seeing them as being the entire cause of the problem, and being angry at them.

The Defensive Pattern involves focusing solely on defending yourself from perceived accusations by another person rather than listening to them.


There are three complementary healthy capacities in the Conflict Dimension--Good Communication, Challenge, and Limit Setting. You may click on each link to learn more about the capacity and then decide if you want to work on developing it, now or later.

The Good Communication Capacity involves: (1) the ability to listen to and have empathy and compassion for the feelings and needs of someone you are in conflict with, (2) the ability to communicate your own concerns without judgment so that the other person is likely to be able to hear them, and (3) the willingness to own your part in a problem.

The Challenge Capacity involves the ability to bring up an issue that is bothering you, assert yourself, and stand behind your feelings and needs without being judgmental in the process.

The Limit Setting Capacity involves setting limits on other people attacking, blaming, or dumping anger on you. It involves doing this in a way that protects you without counterattacking and without being defensive.

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Go to Interpersonal Dimension Group