When we talk about pointing fingers at others (when in conflict) it is typically in the context of blaming them for something. It could be that their words or deeds offended us or got us into trouble. It may be because we didn’t get what we wanted and we suspect the other person’s motives. Or, it may be that we are passing on fault that we own or share.
These and other blame-type scenarios commonly arise in interpersonal conflict and remind me of a great Hindu proverb: …Continue
Added by Cinnie Noble on November 6, 2014 at 8:00am — No Comments
You may have heard the phrase hair trigger temper referring to someone who reacts strongly when angry. As an adjective hair trigger has been described to mean “easily activated or set off; reacting immediately to the slightest provocation or cause”.
As a noun hair trigger refers to “a trigger that allows the firing mechanism of a firearm to be operated by very slight pressure”. According to …Continue
Added by Cinnie Noble on October 30, 2014 at 8:30am — No Comments
One of the things that can lead to conflict has to do with unmet expectations. For instance, we had hoped that another person would have said or done something that reflects their care and concern for us; they excluded us from a gathering or decision; they had something we wanted and knew it was important to us; or they didn’t provide their support or were unreliable about a matter. These and other examples of having expectations work both ways, of course, and we could have let someone else…Continue
Added by Cinnie Noble on October 23, 2014 at 8:00am — No Comments
One way of coping with conflict is to sweep things under the rug. As you likely know, this metaphor refers to ignoring problems rather than facing and managing them. One idiomatic definition consistent with this from Wiktionary is “To conceal a problem expediently, rather than remedy it thoroughly.” Sometimes the tendency to sweep things under the rug comes with the hope that what is…Continue
Added by Cinnie Noble on October 14, 2014 at 8:00am — No Comments
Wiktionary suggests the following idiomatic explanations of the expression walking on eggshells: 1. “To be overly careful in dealing with a person or situation because they get angry or offended very easily; to try very hard not to upset someone or something.” and 2. “To be careful and sensitive, in handling very sensitive matters.”
When applied to interpersonal conflict I think of those…Continue
Added by Cinnie Noble on October 9, 2014 at 8:00am — No Comments
Lately I have been hearing several of my friends complaining about their life partners. It seems it is more than usual, but maybe I am just more aware of their plaints these days for some reason. The gripes typically start with “I hate when he (or she)…” and the “odious” acts, as they perceive them, may be how the person answers the phone, eats, flosses, leaves laundry on the floor, makes puns, and on and on. Of course, the same sorts of responses may be made regarding siblings, friends,…Continue
Added by Cinnie Noble on October 2, 2014 at 10:00am — No Comments
Globalization is making our world smaller with cross-cultural situations at the core. Even though diversity can be a powerful source for creativity, adaptability and innovation, the potential for conflict increases, requiring even more attention to how we deal with differences…Continue
Added by Patricia M Porter on September 30, 2014 at 9:47pm — No Comments
It has been a long time since I first heard the expression my way or the highway. Within the context I first heard it and ever since, I have interpreted it to mean that if someone doesn’t go along with the other’s view (position, want, need, etc.) she or he might as well just leave or go away. Consistent with this interpretation, Wiktionary suggests my way or the highway means “an ultimatum…Continue
Added by Cinnie Noble on September 25, 2014 at 8:00am — No Comments
Whether we are aware of it or not we live in a racial world, which proposes equality, but is firmly set on hierarchy, inequality, and separation. patterns of racial dysfunction have been handed down from generation to generation. How do we transform these patterns and begin to live the connection that is part of our natural human existence?
Added by Patricia M Porter on September 23, 2014 at 11:42pm — No Comments
On October 20th I’ll be kicking off a four-week basic course on Negotiation: Navigating Professional and Personal Interactions.
The unique thing about this…Continue
Recently on the Conflict Coaching Guild on LinkedIn I asked members if they would share idioms, phrases, metaphors and other expressions on conflict that they like. There are many I had not heard of and one of those is the title of today’s blog – never cut what you can untie.
This expression was apparently coined by Joseph…Continue
Added by Cinnie Noble on September 18, 2014 at 8:00am — No Comments
In a recent blog I spoke about the olive branch as a symbol of peace. Another symbol of peace we often think of is the white flag.
According to Wikipedia: “The white flag is an internationally recognized protective sign of truce or ceasefire, and request for negotiation. It…Continue
Added by Cinnie Noble on September 11, 2014 at 8:00am — No Comments
People regularly talk about the role of language in military and political contention – especially with respect to the Israel Palestine conflict. Language plays a role in war and military conflicts. The problem is language can either enlighten or enclose. I address this a little bit more in the posting below but what do people think of language in Israel Palestine conflict? What have you noticed that either opens up for constrains our understanding.
Added by Donald Ellis on September 8, 2014 at 7:56am — No Comments
As more and more teachers in the area of negotiation and dispute resolution consider taking their courses (or, parts of them) online, I’ve received many queries of the “How do you get started?” variety. And, I’m not the only one fielding these questions. I'd like to share a resource, addressing these questions.
Together with co –presenters and –authors Jennifer Parlamis (University of San Francisco), Roy Lewicki (Ohio State University) and…Continue
Added by Noam Ebner on September 4, 2014 at 9:25am — No Comments
When we are in an interpersonal conflict we may find ourselves reacting when the other person tries to have or succeeds at getting the last word. Or, we may be the one who is trying or succeeds in doing so. According to one source, the definition of the phrase the last word includes: “the last thing said in an argument”; “information that everyone considers to be the best”;…Continue
Added by Cinnie Noble on September 4, 2014 at 8:00am — No Comments
A friend of mine – I’ll call him Max – recently had a disagreement with his sister, and he was agonizing to me about it and how to mend things. When he was brainstorming how to get her to talk to him Max said, “maybe I ought to go with an olive branch in hand”. I asked him how he thought that would work and he said, “It’s a goodwill gesture – a symbol of peace – and if she throws it back at me I’ll know the timing is wrong!” Max’s use of the expression inspired me to consider its derivation,…Continue
Added by Cinnie Noble on August 28, 2014 at 7:30am — No Comments
When it comes to some interpersonal conflicts the expression let sleeping dogs lie may be used to mean “to leave things as they are; especially, to avoid restarting or rekindling an old argument; to leave disagreements in the past”. Certainly a sleeping dog is a lovely sight. But to me so are most dogs who are awake. Presumably the image of this metaphor is meant to conjure up excessive yapping and…Continue
Added by Cinnie Noble on August 21, 2014 at 7:00am — No Comments
With the start of a new academic year, college athletes and coaches prepare for another season and often a whole new environment. They encounter new team members, the pressures of performance and a longing for home. During this program, Joshua Gordon, of the Sports Conflict…Continue
Added by Patricia M Porter on August 19, 2014 at 11:04pm — No Comments
I’d like to share a simulation I’ve recently written with co-authors Yael Efron and Nellie Munin: FlashPoint: Syria, 2014.
FlashPoint is a simulation-game constructed as a teaching-tool for the topics of conflict analysis and resolution, collaboration, negotiation, mediation and public international law – or any…Continue
Added by Noam Ebner on August 18, 2014 at 7:45am — No Comments
When we accuse someone of upsetting the applecart we generally think that person is causing trouble and creating difficulties by doing or saying something that challenges the status quo. Of the four variations of the source of the expression that I read about, the most basic and generic derivation refers to farmers in the 1800s who would bring applecarts loaded with neatly piled,…Continue
Added by Cinnie Noble on August 14, 2014 at 7:30am — No Comments