Stop making it worse! Use these 3 steps to reduce conflict and lead with purpose

Most people ruin relationships or lose trust with their team members by making comments, complaints, and criticism from the narrow position of their own perception. While that may seem typical and obvious the real issue is that they double down on their view as if it is the truth and then will fight tooth and nail to protect their position. 

There is another way, especially if you are a leader or in a position of authority and have performance tied to getting the best from others. It’s called perceptual positions. 

This technique has been used for decades to help overcome emotional issues and trauma in accelerated forms of therapy and now you can use it in business with dramatic impact.

The positions.

  1. Self-view (write this down or speak it out in private)

In this view you are looking through your own eyes, expressing your feelings and thoughts about the situation at hand. Go deep and allow all of the niggly irritations and negative thoughts to pour out too.  This is the way we tend to live our lives so this is often the easiest to do. 

  1. Other’s view (write this down or speak it out loud, maybe looking at yourself in the mirror)

Now you are looking through the eyes of the other person or group and typically looking back at yourself. The key here is to do your best to be in their shoes, thinking as they do and accessing their feelings about the situation. 

What’s important here is for you to step out of seeing things your way. This is NOT you applying your way of thinking to them.  

  • How would they feel about you at this moment? 
  • What issues would they share about you or the way you handled a situation?
  1. The Mediator’s view (write this down or speak it out loud.  It’s good to take notes at this stage)

This position is about neutrality and objectivity.  The position of a mediator is powerful simply because they are disconnected from the feelings or opinions of those involved AND their position allows them to see blind spots for those stuck in their own perceptions.

Take notes in this place as there is the opportunity for great insight and release

By using these simple steps you’ll create some space between the situation and your response. Reducing reactive comments or actions is one of the most effective ways to gain control and show up as the leader or person you want to be.



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