Value Conflict

Lesson 12 : Indian Traditional And Contemporary Value

Value Conflict

Throughout our life we have and will continue to experience value conflicts. Some are minor ones that we can resolve without great deal of concern. But some may be major one’s in which the process of resolution is stressful, frustrating or even painful. Successful resolution of value conflicts enhances the self image and the feeling of self worthiness.

  1. A value conflict occurs when two or more values come into opposition with each other. An example of a value conflict you may well have experienced might occur during a test when a friend asks you to give him or her a correct answer to a test question. Your value of friendship would be in opposition to your value of honesty.

  2. Although values of honesty and friendship are in conflict with each other, there are a number of different factors which might well affect the deci­sion. For instance, how close a friend is the person who asked you to cheat? Has this person asked you to do this before?' Is the test a minor quiz, a major test, or a final examination? How good a friend has this person been in the past? Do, i really want to retain this friendship etc.

  3. In resolving the conflict, we will be basically weighing our value of hon­esty against your value of friendship.

  4. The feedback resulting from the consequences of your decision and the action taken provided input, first, for your own self-image and your feeling of worthiness and, second, for future situations.

  5. A value conflict does not really exist until you recognize it as a reality. You have many values. Assume that two of your values are honesty and friend­ship. Suppose your best friend asks for your honest opinion concerning a spe­cific situation. You respond giving your honest reaction, unknowing that your response reflects back upon your friend. In this instance, your values are not in conflict. However, if you know your response will endanger your friendship, this awareness results in a value conflict. The value conflict did not exist until you recognized these values were in opposition to each other.

  6. The recognition that a value conflict exists is the necessity to resolve the conflict in an acceptable manner. How and in what manner this is achieved will be dependent upon three factors. (1) How you view the conflict, (2) the degree of importance you attach to the conflict, and (3) the demand upon you to resolve the conflict. These factors are both interrelated and yet separate.

  7. Although you may be aware a value conflict exists, your perception of the conflict is a vital factor in determining your need for resolution. If you view the conflict as a minor one, your desire for resolution is also minor. Also important is your perception of the relative strength of each of the opposing values. If one value is stronger than the other, the conflict is considered to be a minor one. If, on the other hand, the two opposing values have equal strength the conflict is very likely to be viewed as a major one.

  8. The degree of importance or emphasis is another factor governing your desire for resolution.

  9. As you attach a degree of importance, you are recognizing your value hierarchy and the individual values within it, indicating the relative importance of the conflict, and analyzing whether the conflict is a major or minor one. You are identifying the strength of each opposing value, determining how soon the conflict needs to be resolved, and indicating the amount of stress or frustration brought" about by the conflict.

  10. The third factor is the demand placed upon you for resolution. Although interrelated to the other two, it is still operable as a separate factor. The demand for resolution may be an internal one, or it may be an external demand from one of your spheres of interaction. The demand may also occur within a time frame.

  11. Each of these are separate factors governing your need to resolve the conflict, yet they are also interrelated. Your perception of the value conflict is directly related to how important you feel the conflict really is and the demand for resolution. Each of these, however, occurs only after you recognize the exis­tence of a value conflict. In looking at value conflicts, it is important to realize that everyone, young or old, experiences them.

Last modified: Saturday, 24 March 2012, 8:16 AM