"I always cheer up immensely if an attack is particularly wounding because I think, well, if they attack one personally, it means they have not a single political argument left." ~ Margaret Thatcher

Within identities and personalities, there is bound to be disagreements and conflict. Friction focused in the right direction leaves so much room for growth and development. However, there are those who remove the constructive nature of conflict and reduce themselves to engaging in mere argument. What's the difference? It's subtle but absolutely crucial. Conflict leads to growth and resolution. Argument is void of any kind of constructive qualities.
Sometimes a discussion can start out as conflict and degenerate into an argument. At other times, it can start as an argument and graduate to becoming a conflict. Here are some warning signs that a conflict has turned into an argument:
  • One or both parties have lost sight of the original point of their discussion.
  • One or both parties resort to cursing or using expletives during the course of the conversation.
  • One or both parties begins to engage in a personal attack upon one another.
My mama used to tell me that it takes two fools to fight...just don't be one of them. Conflict causes iron to sharpen iron. If I'm taking things personally because my character has been attacked, then that's even better. It means the argument presented by the other side has reduced itself to NOTHING. Either way, I've made up my mind that every conflict I engage in will sharpen me more and more...even the ones that attack me personally.