Offering The Best Of Ourselves
By Karen Tidsall, Founder and Director, InterCHANGEpd
Change and uncertainty are our travelling companions as we discover a way forward beyond the vote to leave the EU. Whether we voted in or out we are all witness to an unfolding and unprecedented process. Many feelings are swirling around – shock, denial, fear, anger, sadness, elation, and that’s just in the last five minutes! The stress fight or flight reaction may well have been triggered too. Relationships are being impacted across generations, countries and within families and organisations. When change happens, in any context, a thoughtful and reflective approach is needed so we can offer each other the best of ourselves in order to build bridges and create a path for the future. I offer these guidelines to help us navigate turbulence and change, stay well and be constructive in our work and relationships.
1. Keep your ears and heart open when communicating, particularly when you disagree! When a person gets a good listening to they are more likely to listen to you
2. Focus on building bridges rather than winning the argument
3. Keep a check on your emotional barometer. Intense feelings can override cognitive function and result in hurtful things being said in the heat of the moment. Counting to 10 really is a handy tip
4. Cultivate the habit of being the observer of your thoughts and feelings with no involvement or comment – this will help you think clearly, have more mental space to listen to others and express feelings constructively
5. Develop resilience by exercising, putting time aside for quiet and reflection (or prayer or meditation if that is helpful for you), eating well, being with friends and family