Unfortunately, the majority of marital conflicts fall into this category [perpetual problems] — 69 percent, to be exact. Time and again at four-year follow-ups we’d find couples still arguing about precisely the same issue.
– John Gottman
The Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work
There are two types of relationship breakdowns: Perpetual and Solvable
Solvable problems are mostly situational – Like figuring out where to go to lunch when three people want pizza and two want sandwiches.
Perpetual problems are existential – Like your style is direct and the client’s style is indirect. They get upset when you say it ‘how it is’, you get upset when they hint instead of asking.
You might learn to be more subtle in how you communicate, but you’re going to tend towards directness, your client can be more clear, but they are going to tend towards vagueness.
Conflict arises when you think it’s ‘your way’ is the ‘high’ way.
If you find yourself thinking “Why can’t people just be direct like me? It works so much better?” Then you think you’re right, and you’re probably also in trouble.
So instead of being right, you might be better learning how to work in the midst of the unresolvable humanity in the people you long to serve.