The beauty of conflict | Clair Canfield | TEDxUSU

For many, conflict is considered a negative experience and an indication that something has gone wrong. When viewed from that perspective it frequently creates interactions that leave us feeling frustrated and unsatisfied. In this talk, Clair identifies some of the ways we get stuck in the trap of justification and also provides hope for a new way of approaching conflict. This different approach unlocks the possibilities of conflict and empowers us to create the change we want in the world around us, in our relationships, places of work, communities, and most of all within ourselves.

Clair Canfield is a consultant and lecturer at Utah State University with degrees in Communication Studies and a graduate certification in alternative dispute resolution.

Initially inspired by his own struggles with conflict, Clair is committed to changing the way people think and feel about conflict. “Conflict holds up a mirror to our deepest needs and most cherished hope and it is the doorway of opportunity for creating the change we want in our life,” Clair stated. “It is common to feel trapped and stuck when we experience conflict, but there is a way out!”

This talk was given at a TEDx event using the TED conference format but independently organized by a local community. Learn more at


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Watched this for a class assignment and the ending of him talking about his daughter reminded me of God, how he comes to me and comforts me when I am so stubborn. I cried. This was beautiful.

Wow hearing this father talking to his bossy daughter which he then found out was being bullied made me cry. I could feel his pain in his words… wow, incredible Ted Talk… <3 Thank you.

Thank you for sharing your personal story and what you found from the experience. It surely touched many hearts and souls since we all have had those stuck times in our life.
I am working on it to speak fluent my VOCAB. Thanks : ) I hope you and your daughter stayed together strong through the hard time. I hope she is doing great at school and be respected and loved by people she meets. God bless you and your family.

The three pillars of CONFLICT
1. When its about the dishes, its not about the dishes
2. We can get stuck – the seduction of justification
3. The art of speaking resposibly – like learning a new language
V ulnerability
O wnership
C ommunication
A cceptance
B oundaries

Conflict can be the engine of rejuvenation and creating better versions of ourselves! Amazing conversation

I have so much respect for Claire. One of my first professors at college, still of one of my all time favorites. There was a day when class got cancelled, and I ran into him in a hallway and we ended up talking for 45 min just as friends about the things in this video. Total mentor and a great guy

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