Comments: The Power Of 'And'

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Charlie Asher, Indianapolis IN     01/03/11
Important even for the mediator's mindset.
Dale's reminder about the healing in "and" and peril in "but" can be crucial. I'd add only that as I practiced substituting "and" for "but" in mediation, my own thinking changed. I found myself more open to ideas that on first blush struck me as errant, more patient when participants needed to be heard, and even more mindful that in mediation, much as it seems implicit, resolutions indeed belong to the participants. I permit myself one use of "but: “I think I understand what you’re saying, but I want to be sure.” My hope is that if I heard myself using "but" in any other context, some internal censor would intervene. Thanks, Dale, for helping to keep that censor alive and well.