Posts Tagged ‘internet radio’

ASSUME, ACCUSE, ASK

At some point in almost every person’s life, we have made false assumptions about another or blamed an innocent party for something they were not responsible for. Needless to say, both of these behaviors can lead to hurt feelings, people being offended and outraged or an angry defensive response from the targeted party. In some cases, it can prove extremely damaging to the relationship to the extent that an estrangement may occur or the offended party may seek retaliation of some sort.

Assumptions can be of a damaging, neutral or affirmative nature. Let’s examine each one:
There have been times when we have all assumed the worst about another person, particularly if it’s someone we don’t care for. You and your brother have never really gotten along with each other. He lent you his car over the weekend and a few days later discovered that the bumper was damaged. He assumes you are the one who is responsible since it was most recently in your possession. Without inquiring as to whether or not you have any knowledge of what happened, he automatically blames you. Regardless of the truth, he has declared you the guilty party and any investigation on his part is subsequently vacated. An incident such as this can be the catalyst that ends an already fragile brotherly bond.

A neutral assumption might look something like this: I presume that you will pick me up from work today as you have every day so far this week rather than ask you directly if you will be there as anticipated. While the assumption is neither favorable nor unfavorable, it can have a negative impact on the relationship should the other party fall to show up, not realizing that you were anticipating such. You feel disappointed or hurt by their actions; they are annoyed that you failed to ask them. While probably not serious enough to destroy the relationship, it can cause hard feelings that need to be addressed and resolved.

There are also times when we may make an affirmative assumption as well. Though less common, they often occur when someone we care about appears to be involved in an unsavory incident, for example. Imagine if someone witnesses a child doing drugs who bears a striking resemblance to your son and informs you of such. You become defensive and initially assume this person is only making these accusations because she dislikes your child, is a gossip, or wants to hurt your family. Negative assumption of the neighbor followed by an affirmative assumption of our child: you respond, “That can’t be possible. My son would never do drugs.” Wishing to believe the best about someone you care deeply about propels you to draw a positive conclusion without having any data to prove or disprove your theory. You look no further than your love for him and belief in your child’s innocence. You have formed an affirmative assumption.

As for accusations: when others accuse or blame us for something me may or may not have done, we feel as though we are under attack and our natural reaction to defend ourselves quickly goes into effect. Our anger escalates as we feel we are not being treated fairly. One serious accusation, regardless of its validity, can lead to a permanently damaged reputation and/or put the individual at serious risk. Consider accusations of sexual improprieties as an example. A person can lose their job without any proof of wrongdoing, can find themselves under investigation for a serious crime, and/or face the scorn and possible expulsion from their family. Accusations of any degree need to be given careful consideration before engaging them as they can have devastating consequences for the alleged offender.

In the case of a less serious personal interaction with another party where some matter has gone wrong and we are accused of being the sole party at fault, we naturally become agitated. Our perception is that the other party sees themselves as blameless, without having any accountability at all for what has transpired between them. Rarely when more than one person is involved does the fault lie with only one. Only when each party takes full ownership for their feelings, words, and behaviors can positive change occur. Personal responsibility is where our authentic power lies: our ability to choose (how we think, feel and behave).If my actions are problematic, I can choose to act in a different way, thereby effecting a different outcome. However, when I accuse and blame others I hold them fully accountable and in essence relinquish my power, thereby having no authority to effectively impact the situation.

When the tables are turned and we are the ones accusing or blaming others we fail to hold ourselves accountable on some level for the conditions around us: our financial struggles, our marital issues, joblessness or homelessness, poor health, lack of strong friendships, etc. We render ourselves powerless as we believe our circumstances are the result of some outside force rather than our own volition. Keep in mind, too, that powerlessness is one of the very foundations of anger.

Those who assume operate from a place of arrogance or indifference (to truth). When we make an assumption about an individual, in essence we are claiming to know without asking. “I possess superior intelligence, having the ability to assimilate information randomly. Therefore, I need not initiate in the inquiry process. I also have psychic abilities and can discern the motives behind your actions. I instinctively know that ‘why’ behind the ‘what’.” Assumers have no regard for truth. They only seek to support their own agenda; that is, they form a belief based on their feelings of those involved, collect all data to verify their claims, and avoid anything that may disprove their beliefs.

One would have little regard for a doctor who assumes to know what is ailing you. We would fully expect that they ask questions to uncover precisely what is causing you distress so that they may accurately diagnose and treat the condition. Anything less from them would be irresponsible and possible cause for legal action.

A police officer never assumes that the person holding the gun is the one who fired it, causing injury or death to a bystander. As obvious as it may appear, a responsible officer proceeds with an investigation, questioning anyone and everyone who may have any possible information that would lead to the prosecution of the rightful party.

Even in our judicial system, the accused is innocent until proven guilty. A prudent attorney will gather as much proof as possible to accurately locate and convict the person responsible for the crime and to protect the innocent party from a conviction.

Both assumptions and accusations are disrespectful to the other party as they show little interest in knowing the truth about them. Those who are truth seekers ask questions. They refrain from judging others or forming conclusions about a situation without first obtaining as much information about it or the individual as possible. They concern themselves with not having a scapegoat to hold accountable but rather for uncovering the facts so they can best address and resolve whatever the issue at hand is.

A fair minded person would never accuse or assume for fear of being grossly mistaken. One who is truly concerned about the well-being of others asks questions to be certain they know all of the facts before reaching a conclusion and deciding what steps to take next. It is the way in which each of us wants to be treated. As Ghandi so eloquently stated, “I must first be the change I want to see in others.” The Golden Rule instructs us to “Treat others as we wish to be treated.” The Bible commands us to “Judge not lest ye be judged.”

Therefore, be respectful of others as you would expect them to be of you. Refrain from assuming, accusing, and blaming. Ask questions instead. Be a seeker of truth. And only when you have obtained as much accurate information as possible, draw s just conclusion.

Q: “Those who seek the truth ask questions. Those who fear or are uninterested in the truth make assumptions or accusations. Always be a seeker of truth.”

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HOW TO EFFORTLESSLY WIN WHEN ARGUING

Wouldn’t it be wonderful if every time we disagreed with someone we could actually win when arguing? For many, disagreements are viewed as a battle of intelligence between two opposing forces. Each having what they believe to be a strong and valid position on a topic, they engage in verbal and intellectual warfare determined to prove themselves right and their opponent wrong. Whether through the use of reliable facts, the support and validation of others, or a comparison of educational or intellectual levels, some people are willing to use whatever means necessary to prove their superiority over the other. A battle of egos can prove destructive yet short of conceding in defeat or threatening the other party to get them back down, is there any way a person can win when arguing? Actually, there are several options.

In any discussion each party begins by presenting their unique position on a topic. Both are passionate about the validity of their argument and after some time it becomes evident that neither is willing to budge. In order to win, you can choose one of the following options:

#1. Neutralize: The popular cliché, “Agree to disagree” is actually a valid approach to take. By realizing that continually debating what appears to be a no-win situation, you can chose to simply let the disagreement exist. Graciously allowing the other person the right to their own beliefs can stop any damage from occurring as a result of two highly charged egos continuing in a heated debate. Simply recognize that each party has the same rights as the other in terms of what they believe to be valid. Respect that and neutralize the tension by graciously stating that you’re intention is not to convince the other person that their perspective is wrong (even if you believe it is) and that you are fine with those who do not share your point of view. Express your sentiments in a non-condescending manner and state that it might be best to put this issue to rest. Choose a less divisive subject to talk about or move on to another activity. Being respectful is always a win.

#2. Walk Away: People can become very irate when others don’t share their beliefs concerning subjects they are passionate about. After making a sincere effort to have a rational discussion with them, it become apparent that they are becoming even more hostile and defensive. Recognizing when one is in an unhealthy, stressful or even potentially dangerous situation, removing yourself is a wise choice. The preservation of one’s emotional and physical safety must always be a priority. Walking away prevents either side from a possible meltdown or saying or doing something regrettable. Sometimes, in the heat of an argument, one can make false accusations or assumptions, only fueling the fire and possibly causing harm. Disengaging is a win.
Keep in mind, too, that once an individual closes their mind, any further discussion is futile and any possible progress is squelched. A mind is like a parachute: both only work when open. Walking away is not a sign of defeat but rather one of self-preservation and intelligence.

#3. Concede: Giving in in no way implies that you are agreeing with the other party if in fact you still hold fast to your own beliefs. By conceding I mean to simply acknowledge their position as equally as valid to them as yours is to you. With true respect and sincerity, express that you respect their point of view. Period. Avoid needing to point out that you still disagree with them. Conclude with a statement such as, “Yes, I understand where you are coming from.” Then move on to another activity. Integrity is a win.

#4. Reverse: Occasionally in an oppositional debate, one party has a change of heart. They realize that perhaps their way of thinking was somewhat skewed; that perhaps the other person has made some valid points. There is no shame or weakness in reversing one’s position whether entirely or partially. If this is the case and you have come to that realization, openly acknowledge the validity of what the other has shared. Let them know that as a result of this exchange, you have a new, better, or deeper understanding of the topic. Admit that you have found clarity in their position and are grateful for them sharing their knowledge with you. Courage is a win.

#5. Reversal #2: On occasion, the other party may have an ah-ha moment where they realize that what you have been saying suddenly makes more sense to them. They may now realize that their perspective was somewhat inaccurate or that there can be more than one valid argument for the same topic. However, it is difficult for many to openly admit this as there is typically concern of being embarrassed, ridiculed, scolded, make fun of, and so on. In this instance, how you handle yourself is critical. Always be gracious. Show your appreciation for their willingness to listen to your thoughts. Compliment them on their willingness to see things from a new perspective. Keep it light: make reference to a time when you were insistent on an issue only to realize you had made a serious error in judgment or came to realize that the opposing position was actually more sensible. Never embarrass, humiliate, degrade, criticize or make fun of the other person. Refrain from making such comments as “See, I told you so!” or “I told you I was right!” Always treat them with respect and allow them to leave with their dignity intact. Compassion and sensitivity are wins.

Disagreements can open doors to immense personal growth when both sides remain open minded and fair, eager to learn from the opposing side. But they can also become volatile and dangerous when egos control our decisions. One of mankind’s greatest needs is to be heard and acknowledged, not necessarily to have others agree with them. Something as simple as a acknowledgment can be enough to reassure the other party that you are not the enemy but rather an ally supporting their individuality. This enables them to remain calm and relaxed as they trust that you will be fair and respectful of them at all times.

People want to be their own person and some clearly march to the beat of a different drummer. It is an admirable quality that one is confident enough not to be threatened by those who oppose their views. So when discord arises, Disagree with Dignity; Attack the Issues not the Individual.
Remember, I stated that you would win when arguing, not win the argument. There is a critical distinction between the two and when understood you will ultimately emerge victorious, a winner, in the sense that you have maintained your integrity, preserved the dignity of the other person, prohibited stress from manifesting, and safeguarded the integrity of the relationship.

Q: “Disagree with Dignity; Attack the Issues not the Individual.”

Order The Secret Side of Anger, Second Edition or The Great Truth @ http://www.pfeifferpowerseminars.com/pps1-products.html

Listen to past shows on iHeart Radio @ http://ow.ly/OADTf
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10 QUICK TIPS TO RESOLVE FAMILY FEUDS

Families can be our greatest source of joy as well as a never ending cause of stress. Comprised of a diverse blend of personalities, families are a mixture of quirky behaviors, opposing viewpoints, various needs, beliefs, and values, along with opposing methods of how members perform certain tasks. Being unskilled at even the most basic aspects of resolving conflicts, as most of us are, can result in minor differences escalating our stress levels and causing tempers to flare. Keep in mind that every member, regardless of how easy-going, intelligent or advanced in age, contributes to the dynamics of the family unit. Some may overtly create drama while others do so in a more discreet manner. Recognizing the subtleties of each person’s actions along with understanding the motives behind them can better enable individuals to address the underlying (or real) issues and find reasonable solutions.

It is critical, however, that each party recognize their own contributions to the so-called problems of the family while vowing to become part of the solution instead. Therefore, before engaging in the process, ask yourself the following questions: What has my role in this situation been? How have I contributed to the breakdown of our family unit? Is it my attitude, actions, words, or lack thereof? On every level, we are either part of the problem or part of the solution. I must first take inventory of my destructive contributions before I can expect to achieve any degree of success with other members. Assuming I have successfully completely this task and corrected any transgressions , I can now proceed using the following 10 strategies to resolve family feuds:

1. As respectfully as possible (it is always possible), and without making accusations, clearly and succinctly identify the area that needs attention. State facts only, not opinions.
“We need to address the imbalance of chores in our family to make certain each person is doing their fair share.” I need not go into a lengthy dissertation about how I do the bulk of the work and specifically what chores I’m burdened with while pointing out that my lazy good-for-nothing brother spends all of his time with his friends and never lifts a finger around the house. Name calling, blame, and exaggerations never fair well in resolving family disputes.

2. Remove all distractions such as all technology, small children or any projects you may be working on. This enables all parties to be fully engaged with one another.
Expect that for the next 15 or 30 minutes or so, everyone involved will focus their full attention on discussing the issue at hand. If necessary, write down the subject matter on a piece of paper that can easily serve as a visual reminder of what issue is being addressed. Refer to it whenever necessary.

3. Allow each party ample time to state what is on their mind without interruption. In this way, each individual will relax knowing they will have adequate time to express their thoughts and concerns.
Assign a facilitator who will direct and manage the course of the discussion. The use of an egg timer (or watch) can be a valuable asset. Initially each person is given 2-3 minutes to state their concerns or position. When everyone has had the opportunity to speak, the discussion can be opened to random comments. Provide the “speaker” with a small device to hold, such as a pencil. No one may interrupt whomever holds the pencil. The facilitator will ensure each person is granted equal time speaking by passing the pencil on to the next family member.

4. Validate their perspective. Consider their feelings, needs, desires, and such as valid as your own, even if you vehemently disagree with them. Listen with your heart, not simply your ears. This is compassion.
Remember that for each individual their feelings, perception, desires, etc are as valuable and real to them as yours are to you. You need not share them in order to understand this concept. Be gracious and thoughtful.

5. Ask questions to gain deeper insight into what they are saying.
Typically, people will make statements, form judgments, or argue with their opposing family member. True resolution is attained by each person’s willingness to better understand the others. Rather than state, “You only think about yourself”, ask “How did you come to this decision? Have you considered how it would impact those around you?”

6. Avoid criticizing or making fun of them. Be respectful at all times.
Contrary to popular belief, respect does not need to be earned. It is a God-given right of all human beings. The word itself means “to value”. To respect someone simply means that you recognize their worth as equal to yours and all of humanity. Their opinions, beliefs, and behaviors may be questionable but we are none of those. Attack the problem, not the person; comment on the actions, never belittle the individual. Be certain you understand the difference – it’s critical.

7. Avoid blame or accusations. Both are destructive and will sabotage any progress from occurring.
When something goes awry, we need a target to direct our anger at. Blame reveals a lack of introspection and self-accountability. It is self-defeating and robs us of our personal power. Accusations are assumptions based on supposition rather than fact. Dealing with fact-based information is significantly more productive.

8. Inquire as to what they need from you for this issue to be resolved. Listen open mindedly and non-defensively. Discuss whether or not you will be able to accommodate their needs. Make any necessary adjustments.
Expressing concern for the other party’s happiness, safety, success, etc is the beginning of building trust. This is the foundation for all healthy relationships and a critical component for effectively resolving disagreements. People are more inclined to cooperate with those they trust as they know the other person has their best interest at heart as well as their own. Be generous in this area. You will be well rewarded.

9. State your position, needs, feelings, wants, etc. Express what you need from them in order to put this issue to rest. Make certain your requests are fair and reasonable.
Generally speaking, your needs are as important as the other party’s. I say generally because there are instances where an issue matters more to one person than it does to the other. In situations such as these, one can concede and allow the other to obtain what they need. However, if you feel strongly about your position, put forth a reasonable request and be certain that on some level yours are being fulfilled as well.

10. Compromise. A “winner takes all” mentality is never a solution. All parties must feel satisfied in some way in order for the issue to truly be resolved once and for all. Thank them for taking the time to work through this issue.
Finding the middle ground is a sign of truly caring about the other person. Again, this is a building block of trust and trust fosters healthy, sustainable relationships. Respect and trust convert to cooperation, a necessary component to comprehensive conflict resolution. Put your ego aside and consider the other person as you would want them to consider you.

Families will always disagree on things but our differences needn’t escalate into full blown family feuds. Each member plays a vital role in the wholeness and integrity of the unit. When we learn to embrace the uniqueness and giftedness of each individual, we can utilize those qualities to strengthen and enrich the whole. And we can finally live in harmony with and enjoy our families, free from fighting and drama.

Q: “The only way to peaceful coexistence is through compassionate understanding and support. Allow each family member to be who they are, always encouraging them to be the joyful people they were created to be.”

Order The Secret Side of Anger, Second Edition or The Great Truth @ http://www.pfeifferpowerseminars.com/pps1-products.html

Listen to past shows on iHeart Radio @ http://ow.ly/OADTf
Listen to my newest iHeart Radio show, BETWEEN YOU AND GOD, @ http://ow.ly/OADJK
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