Tuesday, 10 November 2020

Phoning a Friend

What else can we do with what we have? Who else can we bring into the conversation to give us a new perspective? The fourth voice, the voice of possibility, represents a way to approach conflict that diverges from the first three. The way we argue is no longer working for us, and we need new conversational and mental habits to prepare us for today's conversational climate. The first three voices attempt to resolve conflict, because conflict is seen as a problem. The voice of possibility seeks to make conflict productive, in the same way that a skilled gardener realizes that weeds are merely unloved flowers, and sometimes those unloved flowers produce sweet, sweet berries that can make delicious pies. Conflict, when we cultivate it, is like a blackberry bush that is accepted and integrated into the garden. It's watered, fed, and brought to health so it can play its part. In some yards, a blackberry bush is a reason to go nuclear, sacrificing every other plant in order to eradicate this pernicious pest. We were a few weeks into her being home with hospice. I could tell that she was tired. She had tried cooking and cleaning the day before and failed. She was getting to the point where sitting up was almost a struggle for her. Cooking for her family was out of the question. I decided that I wanted to cook dinner for us. I was in the kitchen cutting up the vegetables and cooking the ground beef when she stormed in. Unlike her, I was a multi-tasker. What are you doing? I'm like: duh, mom, I'm cooking. Teams often struggle in mental models work, even when it's oriented to a business problem.

Establish an atmosphere in which team members can bring up frustrations for inquiry. Beware of excitement and unbridled action. When team members break through the limitations they have put on themselves and feel they can at last see the truth about themselves, their work, or their customers, they will be tempted to act immediately. Take the time to pause, reflect on strategy, and design small experiments. How to Design Shared Mental Models Building individual mental models is only the first step in helping organization-wide learning. There are many perceptions of reality within a complex scenario, so evolving the individual mental model into a shared mental model is very important to include the different points of view. Let's take a look at our example from the previous article, the ER hospital organization from the perspective of how a group perceives their individual experiences being part of a bigger system. Construct an integrated map. In his words: Satan was just about to take me with him. I had been to many parties over the years but this one was different. A beautiful girl invited me to try heroin. I really liked her and wanted to make her mine, so I agreed and went to follow her. Just as we were about to start, I looked at her again, and saw her transform into Satan. In a flash I woke up and realized where this was leading and walked away. We became good friends, and drank a lot of tea together (it is the best way to socialize in Turkey). One day in the middle of our tea, Abdulrahman said that he wanted to do one of his short daily prayers. He would be back shortly, or we could join him if we wanted? So we went along. Look at the cake.

See the size. What's the point in saving money by making a half-pound cake? I told you that I wanted a two-pound cake,' I howled. My mother had a lot she could have said to me at that point, but she probably didn't want to ruin my birthday. She said calmly, handing me a thousand rupees, `Bhai, it's your birthday, please don't be upset. I'll clear up the mess. Here, use this to treat your friends to a good dinner. Have a nice birthday. The next morning, she sat me down and asked me why I'd behaved like such a spoiled brat. This was apparent in the dark cloud hanging over him, falsely confirming his fear that nothing ever changes. When the child's internal experience doesn't change, neither does their self-concept. Giving Carlos the gift of novel, pleasant interoceptive sensations arising from inside of his own body's nervous system provided him with new resources (in the form of new synaptic connections) to call upon during challenging math problems and other stressors. Deepening new resources by integrating and strengthening positive neuroplasticity: Next I had Carlos tell me more about helping Oscar. He immediately said, I felt happy and proud. I invited him to take some time to notice where he felt these emotions. Without hesitation he pointed to his chest. Then I asked him to describe the feelings he was experiencing in his chest. He replied, It's warm around my heart. It feels like I just fell into a little hole of happiness! If there is something that you are interested in, waste no more time, you need to start doing whatever it is, immediately!

Not tomorrow, or next week, but right now, you can at least make plans to take a step, or even if you just write down the goal, that is already one step you have made towards beginning to dive into your passion. If you do not have anything that you maybe passionate about it already, then just take some time to become self-aware, because we all have something in our hearts and minds that we really want to do or achieve. You may have to dig deep within yourself, especially if you are not mindful of your true inner self and what you really desire. When you truly begin to reflect, you will really think about what makes you happy, what makes you sad, what makes you bored, as well as your dreams and imaginations. Once you get to know yourself, you will have a better understanding, and you can begin work towards and go after things that are near and dear to your heart. God put all of us here for a reason, and many people live their whole life and never discover what their purpose is. You have to want to find out what yours is. A common wish for many is that their purpose in life will line up or be similar to what their passion may be; Just because you love something or you may be extremely passionate about something does not mean that is your purpose on this earth. In the morning, don't go through your entire day in your mind. Don't try to guilt yourself into getting up because this will backfire. Give yourself one task to do at a time. Let's say you have a special fondness for coffee with sugar and creamer. Start out with something that simple- You need to get out of bed so you can fix yourself up some coffee. In this way, you are convincing yourself to not only begin a morning routine, but you have given yourself something to look forward to. That is essential in fighting depression because it thrives on the idea that you have nothing going for you in your life, and hence nothing to look forward to. You might find that your senses begin to perk up when you smell the coffee. You might even be excited to pour yourself a cup. When you do, do not think about anything else that needs to be done today. In other yards, it can be the centerpiece.

There are ways to work with the blackberry bush rather than against it, ways to turn the battle into a collaboration that benefits the plant, the garden, and the gardener. If that's happening, there's no reason to yank it out. The voice of possibility encourages us very explicitly not to do what the other three voices have made habitual in us, which is to find a way to uproot and kill the conflict. It encourages us to step back from the automatic impulse toward resolution in order to look for other ways the conflict might be productive. It sees a disagreement as a sign pointing to something we don't yet fully understand, and seeks to learn from it instead of just getting rid of it. Our conflict-resolution habits, and our conversational habits that unfold from them, evolved out of an environment where taking risks was extremely discouraged in favor of short-term wins. The short-term win, the resolution, is what we are now beginning to question, because it's not the only fruit of disagreement that we're interested in harvesting. In practice, the voice of possibility uses any spark of disagreement as a jumping-off point to find the source of dissonance. From there, it investigates other perspectives with deep curiosity until we're no longer surprised by the fact that the differences exist, even if the differences remain in conflict. (But I'm still her child so this was just a thought. I dared not to disrespect her, even in my thirties. As my lips let go of that last word, I instantly thought to myself: this will be an argument. I tried to get a hold of it, like I'd do with most of our mother/daughter spats. But this one was different. It almost felt like my mom knew this would be the last argument we'd ever have. So now I'm yelling, she's yelling. I'm fighting back tears, she's still yelling. My voice starts to tremble as I spit out my reasoning for why I can do this. I feel like a dumb, overly emotional teenager. Building a shared mental model starts with integrating individual stories into one map.

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