We can see throughout many examples in history that when we look for "who" is at fault, and thereby seek social change through shaming that person (or that group), it tends to lead to disastrous long term consequences. Even if it works in the short term. Instead, if we want to end cycles of violence we can seek to understand systemic causes and context of individuals' behaviour. And from there, look for solutions that stem from this understanding.
Here we explore variants of conflict patterns in part two (of this two part series) that include: refuting "straw man arguments"; not checking understanding, repeating unhelpful behaviour; repeatedly asking for what's already given; asserting rather than demonstrating responsiveness; assumptions; denying conflict exists; neglecting interdependence; stonewalling; absence of curiosity, humility, respect, empathy or care (even when reflecting).
When you attempt to make a request what limiting beliefs come up? See if you recognize any from this list. Then compassionately observe your body sensations, impulses, feelings, needs, memories, energy, and images. In making the request ensure your request is connected to your needs, is doable, what you want, and not attached to them saying yes.
In this Life Hack, we're going deeper into self-empathy with a simple guided reflection that you can work through. This will be followed by a short exercise with a fill-in sheet led by Gesine and is something you can come back to as you wish.
In this thought provoking talk, Kathleen Macferran explores the power of listening to open doors and potentially to transform people. This talk was given at a local TEDx event, produced independently of the TED Conferences.
Resentment is one sign that you need a boundary. You can set a boundary by requesting the behavior that would be most meaningful to you. Include why that behavior would be meaningful to you and share vulnerably. Then notice if you are holding any blame and ask yourself, “What do I need to feel underneath my blame?” If you can take responsibility for those feelings with compassion, the other person is more likely to collaborate.
When someone's in immense pain and uses words that are hard to hear, see if you can bring in as much attention and compassion as you would to someone who was cut with a sword. Focusing on what's important to them, and not so much on how it was said. This may support greater understanding and healing. Otherwise, we risk prioritizing needs, norms, and inequities of the dominant culture, over caring for people who bear the invisible brunt of such norms.