The way we disagree affects the resilience of our vital relationships, how influential we are, and the quality of our decisions. Disagree better with timeless conflict resolution wisdom for work and home:
Here’s how we do it
Five dimensions influence every opportunity to disagree better. When dynamics or conversations become difficult, one or more of these dimensions usually needs attention. Where would you focus first?
The communication dimension
Word choice, good questions, and good listening skills and habits contribute to effective communication. We disagree better when we fine-tune communication habits, aligning our words and our listening with the kinds of intentions and attitudes that pave the way for progress.
The composure dimension
The best conflict resolution and communication skills in the world are little use if we can’t access them when we need them most. We disagree better when we can think clearly, respond nimbly, and regain our equilibrium in the face of difficult and stressful interactions.
The mental models dimension
Mental models are the cognitive frameworks we use to make sense of our experiences. This “invisible architecture” influences what we pay attention to, how we perceive and understand what happened, and how we decide. We disagree better when we can acknowledge our blind spots and interpret our experience in fresh ways.
The process dimension
Good problem-solving process is like a reliable roadmap — it orients us to where we are, helps us identify an effective route to our desired destination, and helps us find an alternate route around obstructions. We disagree better when we have a coherent process for organizing information and navigating difficult conversations.
The relationship dimension
The “space between” is the figurative space between us. Conflict and friction can damage the space between, but there are things we can do to buffer our vital relationships from the negative effects of conflict. We disagree better when we negotiate in ways that safeguard the space between.
Ready to disagree better?
I write a monthly newsletter about the five dimensions and conflict resolution at work and home. For 20+ years I’ve shared it with thousands of subscribers all over the world.