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There’s a thing I like to call the “bounce back.” You’re probably thinking the biggest-loser-life- change-kind of bounce back. This one is small. This one happens in the everyday.

Bouncing back is choosing to lean into conflict through communicating your heart and mind.

Some of you might be those who love to address conflict or enjoy a good argument. Others might be sitting there with a pit in their stomach at the thought of conflict.

I believe this post is important for every one of you. Why? Because the people that matter most to us, the people we desire deep connection with, are worth leaning in for.

Let me explain with a story.

A few weeks ago, my fiancé and I were out to dinner before a friend’s birthday party. With the engagement season, there’s some stretching financially. Raise your hand if you know the feeling!

Anyway, we got into a pretty heated disagreement at a communal dinner table. Pure entertainment for the people sitting around us, I’m sure. Our argument was over finances. Naturally, we grew up with different backgrounds and family situations, so there are times when we are not on the same page. Comments were exchanged about money… and then cut deeper into knocks on one another’s character. If anyone knows me, I tend to get a little defensive when I feel challenged or questioned! So we fought it out… right in front of everyone. Tensions were so high that the waitress approached us, and immediately walked away looking busy (HA!). As dinner came to an end, we had another choice to make besides who was paying the bill.

I could choose to walk away, go home, and pass on the party for some alone time (basically, run away) OR I could choose to stay, to be with Taylor, and go to the party (bounce back).

What would you do? Would you run or would you lean in?

There was a moment in the car that changed everything. Somehow these words came out of my mouth, “Let’s be a team. I hear you. I know we have different views, but we are in this together. We are a team. We are not against each other.”

Bounce back. I chose to lean into conflict by communicating my heart and mind. The opposite of that would have been to walk away, leave the scene, and not talk with the person I love.

What I am learning these days is how important it is to “bounce back” with the ones you love.

Start the tough conversations, talk through different perspectives, maybe argue in public places.  In the past, I’ve always wanted alone time. Isolation. Distance. Time to process (calling all introverts!). But that’s not always what is best for my relationships and the people I love.

So here’s what I’ve learned in the bounce back process. May you be encouraged in your relationships.

 Bouncing back means you’re on the same team.

It is easy to forget that the people who are closest to us are on our team. When conflict happens, we can feel like the other person is on a different team. Though they might have a different perspective or feeling, that doesn’t mean they are not FOR YOU. The moment we realize that our closest people are on our team, is the moment we can say “yes” to bouncing back from disagreements or conflicts! Remind your people that you are with them and for them.

Bouncing back usually happens within 24 hours.

 That’s right. The key part of leaning into conversations and conflict in your relationships is it needs to happen quickly. I have this thing with my close friends called the 24 hour rule. That means that if something happens, comments are made, feelings are hurt, etc. You must talk about it with the other person within 24 hours. There’s less time for hurt, less room for misunderstanding, and more time for connection. Try it. Paul talks about this kind of quick forgiveness and encourages us to forgive, comfort and reaffirm your love for him. That means YOU. My friends action should take sooner rather than later.

(Side note: Hear me friends, this is not about throwing heavy emotions or life situations quickly on the run. This is about choosing to lean in, process those things, and communicate with your people. There will always be situations and experiences that are so big that they are hard to move past in 24 hours. We’re only talking about the everyday things here.)

 Bouncing back creates deeper connection.

What a necessary and beautiful thing for our relationships. The beauty of leaning into conflict with those you love can often unlock a closeness and a connection in your relationships, friendship, or with your family. Connection leads to understanding to empathy to closeness to grace to love (and sometimes even laughter). When we choose to lean for connection remember to be considerate and constructive. 1 Corinthians 10:23 encourages us to seek not our own good but the good of others. That means we choose to bounce back for the good of others, for the good of our relationships.

 Bouncing back takes courage.

You better believe that courage is necessary to make the bounce back happen in your relationships. It can be scary. Brene Brown says it best…

“Waking up every day and loving someone who may or may not love us back, whose safety we can’t ensure, who may stay in our lives or may leave without a moment’s notice, who may be loyal to the day they die or betray us tomorrow – that’s vulnerability.”

And guess what… she’s right. Choosing to love others, to lean into conflict and hard times, knowing they might not respond in the best way, takes incredible courage and boldness, but I believe it’s worth it.

Choose to bounce back.

I want to take a moment to encourage you.

You choose to bounce back because that person matters.

You choose to bounce back because of grace.

You choose to bounce back because you humble yourself.

Friends, don’t waste time. Don’t let your pride or insecurity get the best of you. Consider the people you love most and how you can lean into deeper connection.

So how can you bounce back today?

Who do you need to call?

What conversations do you need to have?

How can you come close to the ones you love?

God promises us a refreshing of our souls… especially when we repent and forgive (Acts 3:19). And friends, I believe that for you. I desire that for you. Let’s step into that today. See how our boldness and courage to bounce back with the ones we love can transform relationships.

Court Kruger is a dreamer and a creative. She’s a member of Team LO. Fueled by community, creativity and coffee, she spends her days moving the mission of Team LO through social media and graphic design. Court is passionate about encouraging other women in truth and love, and she loves celebrating small and big moments of life with handwritten cards.

Follow Court on Instagram @courtkruger

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Courtney Leatherwood

Author Courtney Leatherwood

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Join the discussion 10 Comments

  • Marisa says:

    I think it can be hard to bounce back from things that are more difficult.

  • Michelle Lee says:

    Oh wow this is thee best advice to learn early in life. I’ve been verbally abused due to my fear of conflict. Now I have grown and know that if you don’t disagree on issues you really are with the wrong people. I wouldn’t address any issue in public but I do address the issue in a private location and as soon as possible. It’s good to disagree, it means you care and communicate but never let it fester or stand down. Compromise, team work and listening are vital to all relationships. Great article and so needed to share.

  • cassandra banda says:

    Thank you so much for this post. It could not have come on a better day and on a better time ?

  • Annika Johnson says:

    Thank you for this encouragement, Courtney! I received the email notification to read this post right when I needed it most; nothing is more perfect than His timing! The past couple of days I have been really struggling with avoiding conflict and accepting my tendencies as a peacemaker. The enneagram has helped me know myself better, and your words were just what I needed to as a Nine.

  • Sarah says:

    Thank you so much for this I REALLY needed to hear it I was actually going back and forth with this topic or situation in my head and then this notification popped on my screen. I love how God gives us the answers to things in even the smallest ways. So thank you for this keep up the good work.??❤

  • Lore Lu says:

    Wow ! I just had this experience, few days ago. the person, I like choose not to be in a deeper relationship w me, which leads me to discouragement. And decided to just be disconnected w him, yet it was also the time that he opens up his life with me, sharing his struggles, that he’s been wanting to let go of. But didn’t have any one to trust with. Our situation is really hard for me, I am helping him but at the same time I have to guard my heart. And this blog help me realize more of the value of a relationship, yes it’s really tough and by God’s grace , this shall pass.

  • Vindon Hadaway says:

    Love your post Sadie. I’ve been married for over 15 years and I still find it hard to “bounce back”. But you’re right, you must do it for the sake of the relationship. Easier said than done. That takes courage and humilty.

  • Emilie Nelsen says:

    This blog hit home close today. I have been in such a rough patch and down cycle in my relationship. This was put together so beautifully and inspirationally that it made me pull the trigger and have my own tough conversation in an attempt to “bounce back” in my own relationship. Thank you for spreading the love in this message.

  • Dominique says:

    Beautifully written and so necessary for a life of joy, forgiveness and love!

  • Josefina says:

    Hello Courtney! I just wanted to let you know that a few minutes ago, before I read your post about bounce back I had a fight with my mom. She told me things that really hurt me and I also told her some things that I’m not proud of. Then I read your post and just after I finished I went and told her I was sorry, that I really didn´t want to fight, but that the things that she told me hurt me a lot. Now we are okay. Thank you very much and I hope that one day I can inspire people to do good things just as you do. Is my dream to glorify God with my life. Greetings from Buenos Aires, Argentina!

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