Learn To Mindfully Resolve Conflict With These 9 Best Conflict Resolution Books

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Do you have problems addressing conflict with thought and care?

One popular way of learning how to do so is attending workshops by a conflict resolution teacher.

However, not everyone has the money or time to attend a series of workshops.

On the other hand, books are not only affordable but always available as a handy reference.

That’s especially important when using a strategy such as mindfulness, which you want to come back to.

We’ve put together a list of books on conflict resolution with effective strategies employing mindfulness.

You can choose the best books on conflict resolution to help you respond with intention during difficult confrontations.

et Boundaries, Find Peace best conflict resolution booksThe Mindful Guide to Conflict Resolution
Everything Is Workable best conflict resolution booksEverything Is Workable
High Conflict best conflict resolution booksHigh Conflict
Speak Up best conflict resolution booksSpeak Up
Conversations Worth Having, Second Edition best conflict resolution booksConversations Worth Having
Difficult Conversations best conflict resolution booksDifficult Conversations
De-Escalate best conflict resolution booksDe-escalate
The Anatomy of Peace best conflict resolution booksThe Anatomy of Peace
et Boundaries, Find Peace best conflict resolution booksSet Boundaries, Find Peace

What Is The Best Conflict Resolution Strategy?

There are many conflict resolution strategies, but they’re not all the same, nor are they all equally effective. The following methods are the best for handling conflict mindfully:

  • Welcome healthy disagreement; separate the person and your emotions from the problem
  • Actively listen to the other person
  • Identify points of conflict
  • Clearly express your own needs
  • Meet on neutral ground
  • Agree on a solution
  • Monitor the situation and agree to follow-up

Compare the considerable difference between them and the usual conflict resolution strategies most people use: 

  • Avoiding
  • Defeating
  • Compromising
  • Accommodating
  • Collaborating

Avoiding, defeating, and accommodating are ineffective because they either ignore, compete against, or give in to the other person’s wishes.

The above seven strategies are specific and show why it’s important to know what to look for when choosing books on conflict resolution.

The best books for confrontation included below will flesh out these strategies to make them understandable and help you use them effectively.

9 Best Conflict Resolution Books to Address Conflict Thoughtfully

Knowing not to take conflict personally is far easier said than done. The best books on conflict resolution explain the hows and whys of conflict, how to thoughtfully resolve it, and how to prevent them in the future. 

1. The Mindful Guide to Conflict Resolution: How to Thoughtfully Handle Difficult Situations, Conversations, and Personalities

Talking is the worst, most dreaded part of any confrontation because it is difficult emotionally and can quickly escalate. Maintaining privacy and discretion are essential, too. 

The Mindful Guide to Conflict Resolution shows how to turn potential arguments and offenses into a calm dialogue while you’re confronting someone. It gets straight to the strategies on how to deal with challenging talks and even end arguments peacefully. 

Highlights include addressing a variety of personalities, situations, and conversations and knowing when you need to disengage yourself and step away for a moment. 

Author Rosalie Puiman has succeeded in showing how to get to the bottom of a conflict using practical methods.


2. Everything Is Workable: A Zen Approach to Conflict Resolution

Are there conflicts that you cannot resolve? Are you experiencing conflicts that feel hopeless and irredeemable? 

While you can’t escape conflicts in your daily life, you can turn them to everyone’s benefit using Zen mindfulness. Diane Musho Hamilton explains how to develop your maturity and inner strength by facing conflict head-on, rather than avoiding it or covering it up. 

Learning how to see others’ perspectives, even when you believe you are right and the other person is wrong, will develop your compassion and wisdom. 

This book uses life stories to illustrate points and shows you how to use attention, identify your conflict style, and recognize three fundamental perspectives in any conflict so you can maneuver any confrontation in your everyday life.


3. High Conflict: Why We Get Trapped and How We Get Out

In High Conflict, author Amanda Ripley emphasizes how you can have a good, healthy conflict or “high” conflict, which completely overwhelms us.

It’s an extreme situation that threatens to make people worse, not better when coming out of it. It becomes a competition where we can even become our own worst enemy. 

In this book, Ripley introduces several different types of high conflict situations, including political and economical, and how the people involved found ways to transform high conflict into good conflict and become better people.

Using the most divisive of conflicts and deep insights, Ripley proves that the only real way out is up.


4. Speak Up: A Young Adult’s Guide to Engage in Difficult Conversation

Do you remember when you were new to adulthood? One of the challenges of being a young adult is knowing how to be assertive, speak up for yourself, or even just say what’s on your mind. 

Unfortunately, many adults confuse assertiveness with aggressiveness. And the natural tendency of young people is to run the other way when faced with a conflict-related choice.

They have observed others’ behavior and believe resolving a conflict must involve escalating the confrontation. 

Jared Peters wrote this book to teach you how to learn to address uncomfortable and scary conversations and earn others’ respect, rather than harming relationships. 

While friends are one relationship of focus, Peters also addresses coaches, professors, bosses, and other relationships and situations so that young people can develop their conflict resolution skills and prepare for future conflicts.


5. Conversations Worth Having: Using Appreciative Inquiry to Fuel Productive and Meaningful Engagement

Have you ever heard that one conflict resolution strategy is to start with a compliment?

While it’s not always a desirable strategy, the same logic applies in Conversations Worth Having: you’re turning a destructive argument into a meaningful conversation that everyone will appreciate, regardless of where or who it involves. 

Jackie Stavros and Cheri Torres explain principles and practices that involve redeeming what’s constructive from a conflict, asking questions, understanding what we want, and encouraging the positive over trying to salvage what we can’t fix. 

Hence, successful and healthy conflict resolution becomes a beneficial influence on us and many areas of our lives. This book helps people recognize patterns, break out of them, and improve their communication skills.


6. Difficult Conversations: How To Discuss What Matters Most

People dread having difficult conversations, but it’s worse to avoid them. One of the results of avoiding having those tough talks is feeling blamed for not speaking up sooner.

And when they do have hard discussions, it’s all too easy for emotions to get in the way and make things sour. 

Douglas Stone’s book, Difficult Conversations is all about analyzing a variety of difficult conversations to find their structure, listen for the meaning of what’s not said, how to remain civil, and how to start productive problem-solving. 

Even people with issues with anger alternating with anxiety or people-pleasers who feel like doormats can benefit from the strategies in this book.


7. De-escalate: How to Calm an Angry Person in 90 Seconds or Less

There’s nothing like an angry person during a conflict who just won’t listen and resorts to yelling or other upset behavior. They can quickly become volatile, and that’s when you’ll need quicker, calmer thinking to help you. 

While we all get angry, it’s when we choose to get angry and how we react to our anger that matters.

Douglas Noll uses research from neuroscience and explains how to use listening skills when dealing with highly emotional people, which involves recognizing and naming their emotions. 

He shows how to effectively mediate any disagreement, argument, or fight with his proven method. And he would be an expert; after all, he used to be a lawyer, and his approach has even been used for prison inmates.


8. The Anatomy of Peace: Resolving the Heart of Conflict

In The Anatomy of Peace, The Arbinger Institute emphasizes that many conflicts we experience have the same root cause, even when the people involved are radically different and complete opposites. 

This book fosters a greater awareness and understanding of the pattern of dehumanization resulting from prejudice and discrimination, all the way from local communities to large organizations. 

It will help you better understand yourself and how you work with others so you can handle challenging discussions and make difficult decisions.

The basis is starting with peace within ourselves, which extends to our relationships and even between countries.


9. Set Boundaries, Find Peace: A Guide to Reclaiming Yourself

Setting and enforcing personal boundaries is a big deal and a significant source of conflict. It’s a problem with people who have never learned how to establish and maintain healthy boundaries and people who can set healthy boundaries but struggle to maintain them. 

The author addresses one central question: “How can I be assertive without coming off as rude or bothersome?” It can seem like such a tightrope to walk. 

In Set Boundaries, Find Peace, licensed counselor and relationship expert Nedra Glover Tawwab uses practices from Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) to help people recognize their needs and express them without feeling the need to apologize. 

It works for anyone dealing with anxiety, depression, burnout, codependency, and power struggles because it gets to the root of the boundary problem.


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Now that you have a good idea of some of the best books on conflict resolution, you can decide which ones appeal to you the most.

And because they use different methods, you may want to choose more than one book to expand your skills.

Conflicts are inevitable especially for people with differing opinions. Learn how to resolve conflicts with these best conflict resolution books.
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