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Barefoot Doctor Bit: How Should You Decide Between Acting On or Avoiding Confrontation



Barefoot Doctor: It’s funny you should ask this as I just got off the phone from a business partner who likes confrontation and as I’d been up all night at a party and was with lower tolerance than usual, reacted and had a full blown row. It was really fun and luckily the dynamic there is such we pretty much instantly return to affable neutral and get back to business.


That works because each of us is willing to own their own process rather than blaming the other or harbouring resentment. But this facility for being honest and natural in your reactions and then being able to process them in a mutually helpful responsible way, is rare in most dynamics, especially work-related ones, in which everyone naturally tends to hold their cards close to the chest.


But confrontation is not the actual context, it’s just the mode, as in the context is one of negotiating, which can be done in an intelligent, fair, thoughtful, considerate way or in a manipulative dishonest way, and all shades between.


What I think we’re all looking for is that magically succinct, irresistible communicational key that will unlock the conversation from any impasse and instigate the dialogue that will produce the best result for all concerned in the shorted possible time, with the least amount of persuasive effort.


So in answer to the question, if everything was ideal, which it isn’t, all negotiations whether in respect of professional, social or personal matters would be conducted respectfully, elegantly, eloquently and enjoyably – and it’s generally always smoother if we don’t react, but in reality sometimes a blow-out is inevitable and when it does happen, we must enjoy it as part of the rich tapestry of the theater of life.


If a method was helpful to suggest, it might be to breathe slowly and keep the body relaxed all the time especially during difficult conversations but even with all the self-mastery in the world, occasionally melodrama will erupt. The main thing is to hold fast to the intention that no matter how much melodrama occurs everyone ultimately comes out of it smiling.



Questions by Skrufff.

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