If I had a nickel …

26 Jan

I can’t tell you haw many times I hear this before a mediation: “Well, I’ll come … but I really don’t think we can come to ad agreement.”

And you know what?

More often than not, this person , who was so resolute about their prediction of a mediation outcome was … to but it simply … WRONG!!

So, why do people view the prospects of a positive outcome so poorly? Well here are some of my thoughts on that:

First, they are the ones embroiled in the conflict – whatever it is. They feel they’re in a hole and they don’t see a way out. There is no path to resolution that they can find … much less feel.

Second, they are only processing the conflict in their own minds. They are making assumptions about what the other party is going to say and do. This is so limiting! Trust me on that observation!

Third, they are hanging on to their position and perhaps don’t even know what their interests are (for more thoughts about this topic, please visit our post Why Mediate?). Or for that matter, the interests of the other party.

Coins of USA. US nickel, Thomas JeffersonFourth, it’s probably been some time since they had a conversation with the other party that wasn’t burdened by the conflict. Conflict has a way of taking over a relationship.

And lastly, they haven’t had the chance to receive input that allows them to reality check their proposed resolution to a conflict. There’s nothing like hearing from the ‘other side’ and realizing the strengths and weaknesses of your own proposal.

So, if I had a nickel for all of the times that a person looked into their crystal ball and predicted their conflict would remain unresolved after mediation … I would be a rich person.


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