I usually spend few hours a week prior to the event in preparation for what I call these “mass negotiation marathons” as family has a way of resistance to change and established dogmatic behavior patterns that often do not work in their favor.
What do I prepare you may ask? Here is the system in rank order:
- Situational awareness-who will be there, where are they coming from and what time is the event. These are elements I have found help me to contextualize my labels, mirrors, validations and calibrated questions of defense.
- Write down labels that have been constant with this group. It sounds like you want to travel, it sounds like you want to move, it seems like you are angry, it seems like you want more control, etc etc. There is a very strong probability that when coming into contact with the adversary these will be used. Again labels may have to be created in the moment.
- Calibrated what and how questions are prepared. How often do you reflect on what you say to people?, What caused you to say that?, and/or how did you arrive at that assumption?
- As I am finding this is the last in rank order it also may move up the list. Mirror and Validations. Repeat back the last 3 key words to the adversary. This takes real time practice and I am yet to gain competence with this so that is why it is last.
The take away, any time any person requests something from you that is a negotiation. Any time a person insults you or your children that is an indirect change request that can be defended against and subsequently negotiated. Remember there is choice at all times.