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A Responsive Approach to Conflict

In this post is the full text of the instagram post a responsive approach to conflict. More explanation and discussion of this approach takes place in Conflict Skills 1: A Responsive Approach to Conflict.


Connected to Self

Understanding ourselves, our histories, and how to discern our needs, desires, and motivations from others without isolating ourselves from them.


Sensing

  • How do I feel about this conflict in my mind, body, spirit? Where is that coming from? What is that about?

  • What judgments, biases, triggers, or strong reactions am I having? Is any part of that tied up in my history/past experiences?

  • How is this conflict impacting me, my life, my relationships?

  • Based on this, how do I want to honor and act from these experiences?


Processing

  • What do I understand about the situation (what information do I have?)

  • What is my role or position in this situation?

  • What are my needs and interests? What are the needs and interests that I know from others?

  • Based on this, what do my beliefs and integrity tell me to do?


Deciding

  • What are my options for engaging with this conflict?

  • Which of those options is best for me based on my safety, goals, and integrity?


Engaging

Take action to engage directly, either by communicating about separation or planning to connect in relationship (next).



Connected with Others

Engaging directly in relationship to others, by creating time to understand their experiences and needs. Seeing them as essential to transformative change.


Sensing

  • How have we each interpreted what we've seen, heard, and felt?

  • How has this conflict impacted our bodies? our health?

  • How has this conflict impacted our minds? our ability to meet our needs?

  • How have each of us had a different, unique experience of common events?

  • What can our unique experiences tell us about each other and what is important to each of us?

Processing

  • What does each person want or need in order to make things better?

  • Why are those things important to them?

  • Who has the resources, power, capacity, and willingness to make these changes?


Deciding

  • What are all of the options we can think of to meet each other's needs and desires?

  • Which of these options are best and for whom?

  • What can we initiate now? What can we work toward for the future?


Engaging

Take action; experiment with what we've agreed to do. Return to sensing to understand what is/isn't working.



Connected to Community

Having identified the root causes of a conflict (the underlying structures, norms, inequities), engage with community members to identify sites of long-term transformation.


Sensing (Facilitated listening sessions or canvassing)

  • How do others in the community perceive and understand these root causes?

  • How are their lives, health, relationships impacted by these root causes?

  • Who or what do they perceive to be the sites (institutions, people, cultural beliefs) responsible for those impacts?

  • What are folks' unique experiences and interpretations of the meaning (spiritual, moral, ethical, social) of these events or issues?


Processing (Facilitated listening)

  • How do different people/groups articulate their needs and desires for things to be better?

  • Why are those things important to them?

  • Who within the community has the resources, power, capacity to work toward change?


Deciding (Facilitated brainstorm)

  • What are all of the options we can think of to meet each other's needs and desires?

  • Which of these options are best for those most impacted (now and generationally)?

  • What can we initiate now? What can we work toward for the future?


Engaging (Community Organizing)

Take action; experiment with change. Return to sensing to understand what is/isn't working.







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