Turning Dreaded Dialogue Into Constructive Conversation

What in the world is Going On? 

Elements of an Emotionally Charged Dialogue:
·        People think differently
·        What is being talked matters a lot to at least one person
·        At least one person is feeling very emotional
·        The outcome of the conversation really matters

·        Say nothing and suffer in silence
·        Speak up and make poor decisions
·        Have a skillful conversation

Skillful conversation
·        Each person trusts the conversation as a place to fully share
·        The basis is common ground
·        The conversation has an agreed upon goal, decision or outcome
·        Progress is progress and that’s a good thing

Sharing Place…
 Is this a good time to have this conversation?
o   Hungry? Angry? Tired?
o   Overwhelmed?
o   Distracted? 
o   Personal needs met?

Is this a good physical place to have a conversation:

o   Comfortable
o   Free of interruptions from others
o   Free of interruptions for electronics/distractions
o   Neutral and judgment free
o   Quiet

Mutual Purpose

o  Start as small as you need to for forward movement
o   Progress can look like mutual acknowledgment that you are on the opposite end of a conversation and that everyone is stuck and frustrated
o   Is there common ground or some area of agreement where the conversation can begin

Is there end point that we can agree on? 
o   Decision
o   Outcome
o   Goal
o   Mutual acknowledgment
o   Benefit