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

Being Unafraid to Feel

“The bravest thing you can do is be unafraid to feel”- Bridgett Devoue

When we feel emotional about a conflict – hurt, anger, betrayal, disappointment, and so on – it is a clear sign that something important to us is being challenged or threatened or undermined. That might seem like an understatement. However, the importance of acknowledging what emotions we are experiencing and why cannot be overstated. That is, it’s important and brave to remain unafraid to feel what is going on for us at these times.

This is for many reasons, one of which is that when we step back – and identify the emotions and to what they relate – we gain a better understanding of what motivated our reactions and ongoing ruminations. Also, by taking some time and thinking things out a bit, we start to make a shift to reflection from reaction, which helps move us into a more productive mind set. That shift often facilitates the ability to gain a better perspective, including an understanding of what is motivating the other person. Or, at least, we might move into a better head space to be able to engage them in a conversation – rather than a confrontation – about what is going on between us.

This week’s Conflict Mastery Quest(ions) blog invites you to consider an interpersonal dispute about which you are aware you are feeling afraid to let yourself feel or name your emotions about the other person, the situation or yourself.

  • What is the dispute about?
  • What three words describe what you are feeling about the other person?
  • What three words describe what you are feeling about yourself?
  • What are you afraid of feeling?
  • What are you afraid of saying to the other person?
  • What is the brave thing to do about the situation?
  • What is the brave thing to say?
  • What is the brave thing to feel about yourself?
  • If you were to feel what you are keeping inside, what do you fear might happen?
  • If you were to express what you are feeling how might that help?
  • What else occurs to you as you consider these questions?
  • What insights do you have?

#interpersonalconflict
#conflict
#coaching
#conflictcoaching
#conflictmanagementcoaching
#conflict management
#disputeresolution

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Conflict Resolutions for 2021

Hello:

Here are my conflict resolutions for 2021. I have repeated many from last year because, yet again, I still haven’t got them quite right.

  1. This year I will celebrate our differences.
  2. This year I will remain mindful that we all have lots of room in our hearts to love more and to love deeply.
  3. This year I will cherish my family and my friends and colleagues even more and continue to tell them how much they mean to me.
  4. This year I will listen with more curiosity, with more empathy, with more kindness and with more love.
  5. This year I will approach conflicts authentically and with humility and thoughtfulness.
  6. This year I will be true to myself and honour that others strive to be true to themselves, too.
  7. This year I will not judge, and I will be kinder to myself and others.
  8. This year I will be grateful to those who teach me important lessons by, for instance, letting me know when I am not interacting with compassion and grace.
  9. This year I will reach out more to those in need and remember we are all in the same storm, but we are not all in the same boat.
  10. This year I will do more to build peace – one person at a time.

What are your conflict resolutions for this year?

Warmest regards to you and yours and may your 2021 be full of joy and peace.

#conflictcoaching
#conflictmanagementcoaching
#conflict
#conflictmanagement
#conflictresolution
#resolutions
#ADR

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The Conflict Iceberg

For this week I thought I would bring back a blog that was very popular a few years ago. So, this one is from the archives:

The metaphor of an iceberg has commonly been used as a metaphor about conflict. This is on the basis that there are things above the surface that show themselves and then, there is all that is going on underneath. Compared to conflict, some things are obvious to the disputants (and often others) that reflect the dynamic between them, the issues in dispute, and other aspects of the existing dissension. These are above the water ‘line’.

Below the water line is much more. There are hopes, expectations, emotions, needs, values, beliefs, and other deeply held views and feelings. Our individual and collective histories that we bring to the issues in dispute are in the mass below the surface, too. While, for all intents and purposes, this underlying mass appears to be unnoticed or remains unspoken, it has an enormous impact on the interaction. Indeed, it is an integral part of the conflict and who we are within it, within ourselves, and within the relationship.

Yes, some things may be best left unexplored or untouched. However, without increased self-discovery of what is below the surface, we miss the opportunity to better understand and reconcile our motivations and expectations. And to consider what ought to be shared and discussed, and what needs to remain dormant to reach the optimum outcome.

For these Conflict Mastery Quest(ions), consider a conflict in which you see or feel that only the tip of the iceberg is showing itself.

  • What about the conflict do you think is fully evident to you and the other person?
  • What lies beneath that is evident for you but is not likely evident to the other person?
  • What concerns you that may be going on for the other person that is not evident to you?
  • What outcome do you want?
  • Why is that outcome important to you?
  • What do you want to leave below the surface?
  • How will that help you reach the outcome you want?
  • What is there to be gained for the other person if you leave that below the surface?
  • What may the other person want to leave below the surface? Why do you suppose?
  • Thinking about all this now, what needs to come to the surface to reach the optimum outcome – even though it may be challenging for you and/or the other person?
  • What else occurs to you as you consider these questions?
  • What insights do you have?

#interpersonalconflict
#conflict
#coaching
#conflictcoaching
#conflictmanagementcoaching
#conflict management
#disputeresolution

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Do You Always Like You?

There are times many of us interact in ways we’re not very proud of. It may be because we are reacting to what someone is saying or doing. It may be because we aren’t  getting our way on something we wanted to have happen. It may be because we are hurt, angry, feeling betrayed, jealous, disappointed, trying to assert ourselves, getting pushback on something important to us that we value, and so on.

Interpersonal conflicts often bring out the worst in us and are when we act and react in ways that do not serve us well – reflecting ways we don’t want to be or be seen. We don’t always like ourselves at these times and it’s likely the other person in our interaction doesn’t like us either! Nor do others who observe us.

For some of us this does not matter. We like ourselves if we met ourselves anyway.  Others of us do not want to be perceived in ways that do not reflect characteristics that we take pride in. We do not like ourselves at these times. This week’s Conflict Mastery Quest(ions) blog invites you to consider an interpersonal dispute in which you interacted in a way or ways you didn’t like as you answer these questions:

  • What was the dispute about?
  • What did you want to have happen that didn’t?
  • What did the other person say or do that was especially hard to hear, hurtful, upsetting etc.?
  • As you look back on that situation – what about your answer to the last question resulted in you reacting in ways that you don’t like?
  • How would you describe that reaction?
  • When you think about it now, what do you prefer you had said or done that you would like?
  • What got in your way of responding the way you prefer?
  • If someone you care about observed you – during the time you reacted in ways you didn’t like – how might that person describe you and how you reacted?
  • What would you prefer that same person would say about you and how you interacted in the conflict instead?
  • What sorts of things might you do the next time you find yourself becoming provoked that would prevent you from interacting in ways you don’t like?
  • What else occurs to you as you consider these questions?
  • What insights do you have?

#interpersonalconflict
#conflict
#coaching
#conflictcoaching
#conflictmanagementcoaching
#conflict management
#disputeresolution

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The Aim of Argument

It seems that sometimes when we begin to have an argument with someone the focus isn’t on moving things forward. We might find ourselves getting stuck in blame, spending time asserting our perspective, disagreeing on the ‘right’ outcome, becoming angrier and resentful, and demonstrating other destructive reactions that keep us from progressing in constructive ways.

Emotions get the best of us the more we argue to be right and make the other person wrong! Once that happens and our amygdala is hijacked, reasoning and problem-solving get lost. Restoring the relationship, regaining equilibrium and resolving matters no longer fit into the dynamic. The aim of argument, as in the quote that heads this blog, doesn’t have any chance at these times.

This week’s Conflict Mastery Quest(ions) blog invites you to consider an argument you are currently involved in or recently have been in as you answer these questions:

  • What’s the argument about?
  • What were you thinking about as things ramped up?
  • What three words describe your reactions?
  • What is/was your aim in this altercation?
  • What is/was the other person’s version of the argument?
  • What is/was the other person’s aim?
  • What did you observe and hear about their reactions?
  • Where do you two differ most in your perspectives? Where is there common ground?
  • What specifically impeded your progress in resolving the argument other than what you may have considered already? What impeded the other person from progressing other than what you might have considered so far?
  • What do you need to do or say to facilitate progress?
  • What else occurs to you as you consider these questions?
  • What insights do you have?

#interpersonalconflict
#conflict
#coaching
#conflictcoaching
#conflictmanagementcoaching
#conflict management
#disputeresolution

Posted in Arguing, Conflict Coaching, Conflict Management Coaching | Leave a comment