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Taking Time Out to Gain Perspective

I’m writing this from the cockpit of our new sailboat, “Time Out” on Catalina Island. I can’t help but reflect on how taking some “time out” to do some perspective taking is such a healthy exercise. It is really why I ask every party mediating before me to come to my office–away from their usual trappings and try for a few hours to gain some perspective on the conflict their enmeshed in. I also had the pleasure of substitute teaching for a class at the Straus Institute for Dispute Resolution this week. Seeing mediation through the eyes of students was another perspective I had not taken the time to experience in quite awhile. Many of the students were also law students and my observation was stunning to me: being in the world of “law” and training to figure out who’s right and who’s going to win at trial is a real impediment to mediating!

So this week I’m thankful–that I have a chance to gain some perspective now and then…and that I have the blessing of inviting people in conflict to take a much needed “time out” to do the same.

                        author

Jan Frankel Schau

Attorney Jan Frankel Schau is a highly skilled neutral, engaged in full-time dispute resolution. Following a successful career spanning two decades in litigation, she has mediated over 700 cases for satisfied clients. Ms. Schau understands the nuances of trial and settlement practice as well as client relations and balancing the… MORE >

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