Override Hostile Resistance with Passion
How we handle hostile situations not only is important in the short run, to keep the headaches at bay, but in the long run it can have a major impact on your business or your personal life. Figuring out the best way to handle a hostile situation is critical for your long-term success. How does one know what to do? Well, truthfully there is no perfect or right answer, but here is a tool I learned that has been extremely helpful.
One of my teenage girls was very mad at me. She disagreed with one of my life choices and was determined to not get over it anytime soon. She disliked the fact that my choice impacted her. She disliked, even more, that I had chosen to do something she told me not to do.
So what does a person do when they have an increased tension with someone? Well, of course I wasn’t going to be dictated to by my daughter. That would be giving her improper power and yeah, it's my life not hers. Just like business owners shouldn't be dictated to by their employees.
Of course they should listen, hear the concerns, but ultimately it is their company and the success or failure is a responsibility that rests with them. If they get the responsibility, they get the final say. When you determine what the right decision is, and you feel solid that this is your position, and others strongly disagree, there are several effective tools you can use:
- Listen to their grievance. This is a tricky one, and you don’t want to become a grievance center (extra tricky to avoid this if you’re the Mom). Give a time limit to listen to what they are upset about and try to figure out their perspective.
- Give them time. A lot of things simply resolve with time. This sounds simple, but for a lot of people living with tension or things unresolved can be uncomfortable. If that is a challenge, it helps to remember that by giving some issues time, you can actually end up healing the situation. Unfortunately for me, my daughter was mad enough and in enough pain that the element of giving time wasn't going to resolve the relationship.
- Make the connection with you irresistible. So I decided to give this a try, not knowing how it would work out, and there was no guarantee that it would work, but it didn’t hurt to give it a try.
Connect with whoever you are having conflict with on the level they can't resist. My daughter loves books, so one day I texted her about one book, then another. She was suspicious about my motive, but by the time I got on the phone with her, still talking about books—she could no longer resist. We had a very positive conversation all built on the principle of connection on a shared passion. It was the first step to rebuilding our relationship.
The talk of a shared passion certainly lowered the walls and started to build more of the positive, which of course gives room for much more healing to take place.
If you are struggling with a hostile someone, and you’d like to ease the hostility, you might want to try connecting with them on a passion they find irresistible.
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