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Tuesday, March 27, 2012
Intra-office conflicts often happen because of the way different people or groups operate mentally. Simplistically, I look at how a person’s typical use of their brain affects the way that they approach problems. This can easily be divided into feelings (i.e. limbic) and thinking (i.e. cognitive). Thus a person who takes a rather emotional approach will frequently be in conflicts with those who are thinkers. Likewise, if a thinking person attempts to reason with a feeling one, they will not connect. Of course, this does not mean that two limbic-oriented people will not have a difficulty resolving conflicts. If they are too different in their feelings, this is attack/fight-flight mode will always cause problems. On the other hand, two thinkers can generally reason or argue their way out of a problem.
Emotional approaches almost never result in any resolution. Generally, when one of the parties is a thinker and the other a feeler, the former needs to acknowledge the latter’s emotions. This will partially defuse the situation. If a feeler does not believe that they are being acknowledged, they will fall into a fight-flight situation. Matters will go increasingly downhill from there. However, once their emotions are acknowledged by expressing empathy, then there is room to move them back to a more cognitive/reasoning mode.
There are a couple of other factors here. First, not everyone has the same empathy skills. Generally, this equates to the development of a specific part of the brain (i.e. parts of the inferior temporal lobes). This generally is the result of proper nurturing and socialization early in life. When this does not happen, a person is less empathetic and more prone to have psychopathic tendencies. This also means that even a thinker (such as someone who has Asperger-like tendencies suh as Albert Einstein) may have problems connecting. Therefore, this may create a situation where the thinker cannot defuse an emotional situation by showing empathy.
Another problem is the propensity for an individual to display the appropriate inhibition (generally meaning a dysfunctional right orbitofrontal cortex). When this happens, a tactless person will tend to say or do the wrong thing and make a difficult situation worse.
A conflict can be handled best by showing empathy and moving the other party into a more rational mode. Things will go much better if at least one of the people is rational, empathetic, and has the appropriate tact.
Keywords: Hypnotherapy, hypnosis, psychotherapy, psychology, conflicts, work situations, management, human relations, HR
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