When we are in conflict, we often conjure up a way to describe what’s going on when we relate it to others. And that version is not always 100% accurate. For example, we might make assumptions about the other person; we perceive the story in ways that serve us and build a case against the other person; we minimize our contribution; we construct a frame that strengthens our perspective; and so on. For the most part, we put a frame around our stories when we tell others in order to justify our viewpoint and criticize the other’s.
The thing is, the frame may be crooked; it may be unsuited to the picture we painted of our conflict; it may be too big or too small; or it may even be broken.
In this week’s Conflict Mastery Quest(ions) blog, you are invited to consider the frame you’ve put around your conflict and what one might be most appropriate.
- In the specific conflict you have in mind, what happened?
- When you have related the conflict to others, how do you frame your part?
- What words do you use to describe your emotions that give depth to your experience in this conflict?
- What part or parts do you leave out in the telling of what happened?
- What part of the frame – regarding your part – is not altogether true?
- How might the other person frame how you are coming across?
- How do you frame the other person’s part in the conflict? What part of that do you not know for sure?
- What words do you use to describe their emotions about their experience?
- What part or parts of the other’s experience are you likely framing incorrectly?
- What frame may work for both of you?
- What else occurs to you as you consider these questions?
- What insights do you have?