Most likely, there is the over the top conflict that engrosses the audience. So when Snooki and Vinny get into a fight and the audience is drooling on themselves with anticipation, that's conflict. Snooki wants to know who the father of her bastard child is while Vinny doesn't want to get involved. Yes, that is drama. But, either character has a goal (to either find the child's father, or just keep on partying), and the other is preventing the former from accomplishing that.
So, when you read a story, novel, article, whatever, and you start to yawn, try putting it to the test. Ask what is going on, who wants what? Of course, this is immediately applicable to writing.
After you finish chapter 1 of your new Great American Novel (no sarcasm at all in there) and you read the draft and want to throw it away in a fit of Hulk rage, give it the test. What does your character want? Why can't he/she get it? If you can't easily answer those questions, then you have your problem.
Important to remembering and creating conflict, though, is to not confuse any old action with conflict.
Drama ≠ Conflict (and vise versa)
As James Chartrand puts it: "if the main character is walking down the street and a sea bird suddenly assaults him, many writers point to that as an instance of conflict.
That’s not conflict. Unless the sea bird prevented that character from achieving a specific goal that was very important to the individual, then the situation is merely dramatic. It isn’t conflict."
Make sure that you are creating a reason for the story to exist. An epic battle between man and seagull isn't epic unless that seagull has a specific reason for attacking and is preventing the character from achieving his goals.