I read an interesting book lately called Uncertainty by Jonathan Fields recently and it has changed the way I think about many things. The tagline for this book say “Turning Fear and Doubt into Fuel for Brilliance.” So why did this book resonate with me so much?
We all deal with uncertainty. We all deal with a fear of the unknown. We all need to get to know our strengths and weaknesses better.
In conflict we deal with lots of uncertainty. Who is going to be the resident parent? Who is going to owe support payments? Do we have to sell the house? What’s our relationship going to be like after this conflict is over? Will I still have a job? There is a lot of things up in the air, both material wise and cognitive wise. How will I get through this mentally? What will my kids think of me? What will my co-workers think?
There is a lot of uncertainty for a conflict resolution professional as well. We may have seen this exact situation before, but our clients can often surprise us. This is why it is important for us flirt with uncertainty, to flirt with the unknown of a situation. We are asking open ended questions that we often don’t know the answer to.
Throughout this book (that is brilliant by the way) Jonathan gives example after example of people who have dealt with the unknown. He doesn’t just give you examples but he also de-constructs those situations for you to be able to take action on them. He talks about exercising to expand your mind, meditating and increasing your Attentional Training, he talks about why your mind does what it does.
This word is the one thing that continually hit me over the head throughout this book. Self-Awareness. What do you see when you look in the mirror? One thing that I’ve been continually working on is my attention to self-awareness. I’m not just talking about looking at yourself and asking yourself about some of life’s big questions. No I’m talking about getting to know yourself, both your weaknesses and strengths. Then reflecting on those things and realizing what you need to change. This book has done that for me and it has made me realize some of the things that I have been ignoring in my own life.
We all have different ways of creating space for self-awareness. Here are some of the ways that I create space for myself to look inward: Reading, writing, listening to music, exercise, I could name more, but I want to hear from you as well!
This book has inspired me so much that I need to give someone a copy of this book. In order to be entered into this draw (Winner will be drawn by using Random.org) leave me a comment below with your opinion/thoughts on one of the two questions:
1) How do you create space for self-awareness?
2) How do you deal with uncertainty?
Our winner will be announced on on October 28, 2011 in the evening. Giveaway only valid for residents of Canada and United States.
James Alfini describes some of the skills that law students should be taught in order to handle a conflict with an ADR method.By James J. Alfini