Sitting at a table on the pavement in St. Peter’s square, I was enjoying my lemon tart as I heard a couple begin to squabble over the bill. Their young son who could not have been up to 6 years old promptly said ‘stop stop let’s not start a fight’. And you know what, he was right, “out of the mouths of babes” is what they say after all. The husband had told his wife that they should pay by cash but when the waitress asked if they were paying by card he said yes. The wife was quick to protest and inform her husband; “why did you tell me to prepare cash when you’ve told her you’ll pay by card” Her husband, Who was not expecting the confrontation promptly said to his wife; “she asked and I just didn’t want to say no”.

“But you only just said it” the wife continued.
It was at this point their young child intervened. It appeared that this was a natural pattern of behaviour and it struck a cord with me.

Some people do not know how to avoid conflict. Some people do not understand when to cease and desist from their initial plan of action. So many of us are so quick to jump into an argument without thinking if it is absolutely necessary and if the argument will yield any profit. Letting your opinion be known is one thing, and it is often necessary. However, repeating the same opinion when there is evidence of no penetration, is evidence of a lack of wisdom. That husband did say to my hearing that his wife should pay by cash but he as any human being had a right to change his mind. I had heard them talk about how paying by cash would strip them of all the cash they had left. I saw them struggle with Italian, I saw their three children. I knew they were tourists. Paying by card was the right decision to make. So whether he chose to pay by card because he didn’t know how to reply the waitress in Italian, or he reconsidered that having cash as a family of tourists was necessary, he was right.

Sometimes we are too quick to choose conflict. Sometimes we jump to defend ourselves or accuse the other party without any evidence. This may be out of insecurity, previous disappointment, or fear of losing control. But we should always remember that the peaceable option is always preferred, we must pause and hold our tongue. Regardless of how well we know the other person, we can never know what is in their mind and heart at any given time. In the words of Saint Paul, “we should try as much as possible to live at peace with all men”. He was right and we should all start within. Sometimes, I feel the arguments we have with others is a result of the conflict within us as opposed to any real issue we have with them. In the past year I have tried to reduce the ‘drama’ prone relationships in my life, because let us face it, the world is already full of conflict and strife, we do not need that in our interpersonal relationships too. Try not to be cantankerous, aim not to be a nag. People will always do something to upset you, but learn to diffuse the angst of conflict by choosing peace.

the arguments we have with others is a result of the conflict within us as opposed to ........ them Click To Tweet

Have you found yourself in a position where you needed to choose peace? What about staying silent do you struggle with? If you were the wife in the scenario above would you have spoken up?

Do leave a comment below.

Until next time. Dami loves her Roman holiday.

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