Relationships can change in a heartbeat

What is your go-to behavior when someone says or does something you don’t like? We all have one and it is helpful if you know what yours is before it creates a break in a personal or professional relationship.

We all have the same basic needs: safety, security, personal morals, friendship, family, self-esteem, respect lack of prejudice and acceptance and can be more motivated when these needs are perceived to be violated. So when someone the biggest communication problemtriggers your hot button ask yourself what are your motivations in the situation? Are you concerned about control, fairness, privacy? Personal feelings are important and should never be dismissed and finding the right way to understand a situation from all perspectives can be hard.

Communication is difficult in the best of times and stressful situations can quickly become a match to the flame of misunderstandings. We rarely take the time to ask ourselves what the other person’s motivation is in a situation so before you react, stop and take a few minutes to ask yourself some questions:

  • Do you know why they said/did something?
  • Were you there or did someone tell you about an event/conversation?
  • What were the circumstances?
  • Does the situation warrant your intervention?
  • Did they just make a mistake?
  • Were they misinformed by someone else?
  • Were they trying to help but actually made it worse?
  • What is happening in the other person’s life, are they under pressure or stress?
  • What could the consequences be if you confrontation the other person because you assume you know their motivation?

Sometimes the best approach is to do nothing, if that isn’t possible consider asking the other party about what happened by using “I” words not accusatory “you”. The next step is up to you, you can choose to retaliate, confront, belittle, argue or you can choose to find a way to strengthen the relationship. Learning and listening to another’s perspective on a situation can be the first step in understanding on both sides. You may decide that working with a trained mediator to facilitate the discussion is necessary to ensure a positive outcome. Contact us for information 702 527.4392 or

Remember, just because you are right doesn’t always mean they were wrong.

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