Archive: January 2017

Ugly Conflict? Map It Out

Posted January 10, 2017 • Conflict Mastery,Emotional Intelligence • by Jennifer Goldman-Wetzler, Ph.D.

Difficult conflicts are typically caused by multiple interconnected factors, but our tendency is to view the situation in much simpler terms. Our minds are always searching for certainty and clarity, causing us to see things in black and white rather than to remain aware of the many detailed nuances of a situation. This evolved over millennia as a way to enable us to successfully adapt to a world of overwhelming data, but one of its drawbacks is that it can severely limit our ability to see complex situations clearly. For example, we typically see complex conflict as occurring between two people or between two groups when it actually involves many more people and groups than that. Because of this limitation, in order to master conflict, it helps to start by not doing anything at all. It helps to simply observe who the players are, how they’ve behaved and how they’re connected to one another.

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