#27: Toe and Carpet

by Skimming

Today was not a day of slowing down.  The beginning of a crazy week at work.  Must try again tomorrow.

I took this photo just for fun today.  Not sure what made me take this one.  Kind of looks like the head of a Tyrannosaurus Rex eating my foot.

I’ve been learning a lot lately about how much interpersonal conflict comes from reactions people have to others which is really driven by their own fears, insecurities, issues, challenges, or even as simply as not being given a chance to air their own opinions or thoughts.  Once you actually name the fear, insecurity, issue, or challenge or give the other person a chance to air their opinions or thoughts, the air is cleared and the conflict disappears.

I’m in a situation now where I’m moving fast on some business matters without giving much chance to others to air their fears and concerns.  A lot of the business is being done over email rather than in person or even on the phone because there just isn’t time.  And in the process, I’m jarring a lot of nerves and rustling feathers that probably would be inevitable because of the way I’m handling the whole situation.  If I had more time and energy, I’d be talking to each of the individuals whose feathers are being rustled, check in and make sure to understand how they’re feeling about the abrupt and quick changes, and assuage their fears.  But there really isn’t the time.

I’m actually depending on trust I have in the bank with these people to ensure them (over email) that my intent is not destructive, negative, harmful, but is really because there just isn’t time (or money) to take my (our) time on things.  And so far, I’ve been able to ride on that extra “trust”-savings I have.  However, I’m not sure how long that will last.  Will it last till the end of August when I leave it all behind?

So dealing with interpersonal conflict– what matters:

  • having trust that was built up over time through genuine relationship building.  This comes from years of listening, being positive, not taking things personally, being genuine and honest in all aspects of a relationship.
  • getting at the “heart” of the matter— what’s really bothering that person?  When they say something, there’s usually an underlying message, and the hard part is finding out what’s at the heart.
  • not taking it personally myself.  I’ve often found that taking things personally is usually the wrong thing to do because most of the time it isn’t about me, it’s really about other person and something they’re dealing with.  (Well, I can say that because I don’t think I do mean things to people usually.  At least not intentionally!)
  • taking the time to communicate from a place of genuine care.  And if it doesn’t work, then let it go.  But it takes time and genuine care to hash through miscommunication and layers of issues and other fogginess.  This can’t be rushed for sure.

And on that note, we come back to “s l o w i n g   d o w n.”

I realized after thinking a bit more about my entry yesterday that I slow down for others.  But I don’t slow down for myself.  And I need to do that.  In fact, I rush mostly when it comes to myself.  Not giving myself time to relax, reflect, and replenish the energy that is depleted from rushing.  Interesting…

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