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What Is Wrong With My Good Intentions?

Behave Reminder for Young Person in Red Sneakers about to make a Step and Join the Party, Top View.

Quick Tips

  • Identify what triggers negative reactions for you.
  • Identify your intention.
  • Focus on changing some of your specific behaviors.

How do I make my intentions to be conflict competent a reality?

Intention rescue.

Have you made a commitment to hone your conflict resolution skills this year? Are you struggling, even feeling like a failure?   Let me give you a “rescue remedy” for bringing your good intentions to fruition.

Identify your triggers.

If a specific statement, action or person creates a conflict response, know this about yourself.  Be aware of what triggers a negative reaction in you.

Ask some questions.

Think about a situation or a person which triggers a conflict or negative response for you.  Ask yourself:

  • How do I want to be in this situation?
  • What are the values and beliefs I want to uphold in this situation? Example: “I want to be confident and strong.”

Make a commitment to your intention.

Write on card, “I am willing to practice being ___ (value or belief around this situation or person)

Example:  I am willing to practice being forgiving.

This act of willingness says a lot about your commitment.

Translate commitment to behavior.

Identify the behavior(s) necessary to meet the commitment.

Example:  I might ask myself, “How do I be forgiving?” 

Then I look at the behavioral responses I personally have to change in order to be forgiving in this situation:

  • Listening with understanding.
  • Not getting defensive.

If you find it difficult to identify behaviors to support your intentions, think of what you are not doing when you are not supporting your intentions.

Example:  When I am not being forgiving….

  • I don’t care what the other person has to say.
  • I interrupt when he or she speaks.
  • I use a terse tone of voice.

Get a mentor.

Pick a trusted friend, colleague or coach to give you feedback about how well you are doing in changing behavior.  Have them observe you in the situation and give feedback in the moment or shortly afterward.

Your Assignment

In my Texas Conflict Coach® podcast, I suggested an assignment to help make your intentions a reality:

  • Write your intention statement down in the next 24 hours. “I am willing to practice ___.”
  • Identify the behavior changes you need to make in order to make your intention a reality.
  • Practice the behavior changes and get feedback from a trusted mentor.

To learn more about this topic, listen to the entire episode GOOD INTENTIONS OFTEN PAVE A PATHWAY OF GOLD…TO HELL

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Conflict Coaching: Empowering YOU to Move Through Conflict Constructively

Straight from the Archives!

In this episode we learn how conflict coaching can help YOU. Cinnie Noble talks about how she moved from a mediation practice to one of developing a full-time conflict coaching practice. Her conflict coaching model is a structured model developed from an evidence-based research.

We highlight how conflict coaching is different from counseling and other forms of coaching. The CINERGY conflict coaching model supports one in becoming conflict competent in engaging in conflict constructively. This type of coaching also supports one in moving through specific disputes.


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Make This New Year A Conflict Resolution Knockout

New Year Conflict Resolution

The time has come and the New Year is here! It’s fine, get excited. I’m sure you have great things in store.  I also know the New Year can overwhelm many of us with unresolved conflict. You go into the New Year with the same drama from the previous year, with unclear solutions and past grudges. You make new resolutions but with no steps to get you there.

Conflict is important in our lives because it is an opportunity to communicate our unmet and unheard needs. Think about how unresolved conflict affects your life and the people around you. Why are you dragging existent conflict into the New Year? Do you have a family member you never made up with? A negative situation that happened during Thanksgiving which you haven’t addressed? An ongoing feud with a coworker? Or even a problematic neighbor? All these situations create conflict in your life and you deserve to address them in the New Year, with a new or more effective approach.

So, what are your plans for managing and resolving conflict in the New Year? Each year you make a promise to yourself, you set goals…to do something better, less, more or implementing something you never did before. Most of the time you make these decisions because you want to improve yourself, your life or the situations around you in hopes of positive outcomes. You make the common New Year’s Resolutions like lose weight, stop smoking, less drinking, eat healthier, get a better job, save money and spend more time with family with friends. While all those things are very important, what about the conflict in your life or surrounding it? What will you do differently to change the way you handle conflict in 2014. Any goals?

For Starters…

  • ·         Be willing to communicate. Extend the welcome that you are committed to something different.
  • ·         Prepare to listen.  Listen for feelings and important information from the other person.
  • ·         Do not assume anything.  Ask the person you are in conflict with to explain their intention or motivation.
  • ·         Utilize your resources. . Ask for help from a mediator, Human Resource professional, or even a mutually trusted friend
  • ·         Accept differences. It’s okay to have different opinions and interests.

Tips for managing and addressing Conflict for the New Year (Adapted from Beyond Intractability)

  • Actively Listen. Pay attention to what the person is saying and ask for clarity.
  • Speak directly to the person who needs to receive the message. Give that person your full attention.
  • Speak from your perspective. If the message involves addressing your co-worker’s many long breaks, let the co-worker know how that impacts you or your work environment
  • Speak for a purpose. Plan out what you want to say and focus on it. This will keep you from rambling when you deliver the message.

 Conflict is often due to misunderstanding, ineffective communication and having different interests or needs. This New Year you can learn how to improve those things. Make this New Year a conflict resolution knockout! For more information listen to our past podcasts How to SOLVE Your Conflicts and Become Conflict Competent: Your New Year’s Plan.

 By Tierra Henry, Graduate Student, University of Baltimore



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Developing Your Conflict Competence

Conflict is at the heart of some of our best ideas and at the root of some of our worst failures. How can we improve our competence to make the best out of this inevitable part of our lives? During this show Tim Flanagan and Craig Runde will discuss how to improve cognitive, emotional, behavioral and normative skills required to manage conflict effectively. They will draw on stories and tips from their new book, Developing Your Conflict Competence.


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Becoming a Conflict Competent Leader

 Got Conflict? In this episode, we will speak to Craig Runde, co-author of “Becoming a Conflict Competent Leader.” This book “underscores the importance for leaders to develop the critical skills they need to help them, their colleagues, and their organizations deal more effectively with conflict and move their organizations forward.” But wait folks, this is not just for leaders, this book is for anyone who want to learn the why and how to manage conflict effectively.


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