What’s one of the most frequent questions audience members ask me about navigating conflict at work and home?
How to do conflict resolution right … more quickly?
Now, I’m no fan of hanging out in a difficult conversation because I like a slow pace. But I don’t buy the premise that, even in a multi-tasking, fast-paced American life, hurrying through important conversations is the right goal.
The question was on my mind again while reading Robyn McMaster’s recent post, Prodding your patience?.
“We are addicted to speed,” according to Carl Honore, “to cramming more and more into every minute. Every moment of the day feels like a race against the clock, a dash to a finish line that we never seem to reach.”
What Robyn terms “roadrunner days” can lead to increased cortisol levels in our bodies. And why should we care about cortisol? Because cortisol shuts down learning, contributes to anxiety attacks, and is associated with depression.
I think it’s time for a conflict resolution version of the slow food movement. We’ll call it the slow conflict movement. The slow conflict movement will have these tenets:
- No hurrying through important conflict to get it over with. The most important conversations in our lives deserve our attention.
- Slowing down conflict means not missing the gems we don’t hear when we’re hurrying.
- Slowing down doesn’t mean dawdling. It means doing it right, at the right pace.
How and when do you slow conflict down?