Bridging the Gap – even when you disagree

This is a talk I did at a recent public symposium at the Fayetteville, Arkansas public library. (A beautiful space, if you’re anywhere in the area!) The overall symposium topic was “Discover the Power With(in).”  Eight speakers, of which I was (obviously) one, presented their perspective on personal power, the power we all have within us to create collaboration and …

gljudson Conflict

Sometimes it just doesn’t work

You thought and wrote about what you wanted to happen till your pen ran dry and your hand cramped up. You practiced what you wanted to say till your voice got hoarse and your heart cracked open. But sometimes it just doesn’t work. My brother and I have been out of touch for a long time now. It wasn’t anything …

gljudson Conflict

Do it now! 3 steps to hard conversations

Difficult conversations are, well, difficult. Hard. Challenging. Intimidating. Easy to put off. I’ve had several discussions recently with people who were trying to decide how to tackle a difficult conversation. In each case, the over-riding emotion was some form of do I hafta? combined with I’m dreading this! Of course I understand. I face my own sense of dread and …

gljudson Conflict

The gentle art of conflict transformation

Some people avoid conflict. Others seem to relish it. Google “conflict management,” and you’ll get over nine million results – and a lot of autofill suggestions about conflict management styles, examples, process, and so on. Google “conflict resolution,” and you’ll see over 70 million results! Based on those numbers, it seems like a lot more people are trying to fix …

gljudson Conflict

What do we do next?

This has been an unbelievably weird, wild, difficult year. An unprecedented number of catastrophic, profoundly painful events have caused immense loss and suffering for a tremendous number of people across the United States and around the world. Parallel to these in-the-moment events are revelations of long-ongoing acts of harassment and violence against various groups of people deemed “not like us” …

gljudson Conflict

When you have every right …

Someone did something wrong. Something happened, outside of your control but within theirs, that impacted you in a hurtful, time-consuming, or perhaps even expensive way. You have every right to be angry. Pissed off. Annoyed. Frustrated. Forget this empathy horsepucky – you’re mad, and you’re going to tell them all about it. Hold on a minute! There’s a big misconception …

gljudson Conflict

How do you empathize with someone who’s WRONG?

A reader sent me this question: How do you empathize with someone who is very wrong? My reader had been in a situation where her personal space was invaded – painfully. We’ve probably all experienced something like this: we’re standing innocently on line at the supermarket and the person behind us shoves their shopping cart into us. More unusually, not …

gljudson Conflict

An alternative to “safe space”

“This is a safe space.” We hear that a lot in coaching, counseling, consulting, and even in business meetings. Groups on Facebook and on LinkedIn are touted as “safe space” where we can feel comfortable in the company of like-minded people: no one will push our buttons. Educational institutions are under pressure to create “safe space” where students and teachers …

gljudson Conflict

How NOT to pick a mediator

You’ve faced an unhappy fact: your team needs help. The conflict you face isn’t resolving itself, and each attempt at discussion just escalates the issue. The situation is getting increasingly tense, with finger-pointing accusations and name-calling becoming more and more frequent. The only thing you seem to agree on is that something  needs to be done. Perhaps it’s time to hire a mediator. But how …

gljudson Conflict