art work by John Ceprano
CINERGY (tm) - Peacebuilding... one person at a time

Mending Matters

When I was young, I used to watch my mother darn the heels of my father’s socks and she would use a light bulb to round out the spot inside each sock. I asked her why she did that and she said it gave her the full area of the heel, so she didn’t guess at the tension of the spot and make it uncomfortable for my dad.

For some reason this image and conversation came to me the other day. Being in the conflict management field it is strange what things arise that provide metaphors about conflict! So, when it comes to this story – regarding what my mother said about mending the heels of my father’s socks – I found myself wondering how we know if our conflicts are mended for ourselves and the other person so that we are not guessing at the degree of tension. Are we remaining uncomfortable though it looks like things are mended?

If we avoid; if we rush to settle (though we know things are not settled); if we don’t fully gain understanding and perspective; if we don’t ask for what we need; if we don’t hear what one another needs; and if neither of us listens and makes some attempt to fix what needs mending, things will remain unnecessarily uncomfortable.

This week’s Conflict Mastery Quest(ions) blog invites you to consider a specific matter that remains unmended when answering the following questions:

  • What is the dispute?
  • What remains unmended for you? How might you describe the tension you are experiencing?
  • What do you think the other person doesn’t know about you and where you are coming from?
  • What may be unmended for the other person?
  • What don’t you know about where she or he is coming from?
  • What might mend the dispute – something that you have not said or asked for? What might she or he say to or ask of you to help mend things for him or her?
  • What else might she or he do to help mend things?
  • How do you want to feel that you don’t right now?
  • What is keeping you from fully mending matters?
  • If things were resolved, what would be different in yourself? If things were resolved, what would be different in the relationship?
  • What else occurs to you as you consider these questions?
  • What insights do you have?


This entry was posted in Conflict Coaching, Conflict Management Coaching, Metaphors. Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *