Discourage litigation. Persuade your neighbours to compromise whenever you can. Point out to them how the nominal winner is often a real loser – in fees, expenses, and waste of time.
Read more about Mediation.
As former U.S. Secretary of State Colin Powell once said, “Bad news isn’t wine. It doesn’t improve with age.”
‘Bad news’ takes many forms. Is there any bad news you are currently holding onto because you fear the consequences of releasing it?
Think carefully… What would you, and perhaps others lose? What’s the worst that can happen and will you survive it? What would you feel like in the other person’s shoes? Will it go away if you hold onto it? Really? What if someone else releases it before you do?
There probably is no simple solution, and I am not advocating action in one direction or another. What I have seen is that holding onto bad news can be habitual rather than based on rationally considering the options.
Now, what are you going to do?
“Our fears always outnumber our dangers.” (Latin proverb) Our fears are just our mind running away with thoughts of negative consequences at the hint of danger, and yet so often our fears are groundless and nothing bad happens. Should we fear ‘just in case’? Is fear a form of risk management?
What is the opposite, the balance?
Consider the phrase ‘irrational optimism’ or even ‘outrageous optimism’. This is just our mind running away with thoughts of positive consequences, many of which won’t come to pass. Should we be optimistic ‘just in case’? Is optimism a form of opportunity management?
Notice when you are doing one or the other, because we need a balance of both risk and opportunity management.
People often describe good listening as being able to paraphrase back to someone what they have just said. Here is a different test. Were you able to hear something new in what was being said?
Next time you hear someone saying ‘that same old thing’, instead of assuming you know what’s coming next and switching off, be curious and listen for something new, however small.
Curiosity can’t do any harm, despite what the cat reported. Curiosity informs you about life. Without curiosity, we are blind.
Noticing something new, especially where you thought it would be the same old stuff, means things are changing, and that’s interesting. Nothing is static, so there is always change if we can but notice it.
This week, when someone you know is talking, focus on listening for something new, however small. Notice the change.
Then when you hear it, what will you do with it?
Here are some tips on listening well.
People can be strange. Very strange. But we only think that because they are not like us.
I was reminded of this today at the supermarket when the person in front of me at the checkout handled a situation so differently to how I would.
It made me smile as it was a nice, and in this case painless, reminder of how different we all are.
Our personal styles vary, and knowing ours, and guessing the style of others based on their behaviour can help us when working with them.
For example, I tend to be more introverted than extroverted, and more task focused than people focused. This has implications such as I prefer time to reflect on something and I seek clarity and tend to be more analytical in my approach to things. So don’t rush me and you’ll get my best 🙂
Do you tend to be extroverted or introverted? Do you tend to be task focused or people focused?
Now click here to get some tips on how to use this simple model to help you influence and work with others around you.
This tip may not suit everybody, but it’s worth thinking about 🙂
I read this line in a book a few days ago. It took a bit of processing and the implications are still reverberating through my mind.
“We think we have a reality problem, when in reality, we have a thinking problem.”
It has the ring of that line from Hamlet “there is nothing either good or bad, but thinking makes it so”.
We are feeling beings, and so it is easy to be fooled into thinking that what we feel happens because of what we experience, because of what we perceive as our ‘reality’. However, it is not what we experience that makes us feel how we feel, it’s how we think about what we experience that makes us feel what we feel.
If you are in a movie and thoughts of the car seat covers you just ordered pop into your mind, you will dismiss the thought and get back to the movie.
If you are thinking about a problem at work and the doorbell rings, you dismiss the problem thoughts and answer the door. If it’s the neighbour who needs help with some minor emergency, chances are the work problem thoughts won’t come back for a while as your focus has changed.
We don’t have the power to stop a thought arising, but we do have the power to dismiss it or dwell on it, and therefore the power to dismiss the feelings that accompany that thought, or wallow in them.
Feelings are ephemeral, they come and go as our thinking changes. This week, notice how your feelings change as your thinking changes, and how they hang around if you dwell on something.
Are you a political animal? Of course you are – you’re a human being. Whether you dislike or enjoy the thought of getting involved in organisational politics, if you are part of an organisation – large or small – you are part of its politics. So find out in this section what sort of political player you are. Are you are a sheep, a donkey, a fox or a wise old (or young) owl?
Discover 50 simple tips on how to manage people more effectively so your job as a manager gets easier, and you get better results than ever before.