1 It’s all in your head


1 It’s all in your head

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1 It’s all in your head

As with everything we do in this program, we start with you – because in the end, as a manager, when everything goes pear shape, sometimes the only thing you can make any difference to is the way you respond to it – and in most cases, that makes all the difference!!

OK – when it comes to conflict and anger, there is a lot of stuff we are up against and will be hard to change.  But enhancing our awareness of this will help us choose our response – and there are a lot of different responses to conflict – which we will look at in a minute.

How we are wired influences to a large extent how we respond to conflict.

To totally oversimplify the brain for the purpose of this exercise, there are two important parts relating to conflict: they are:

1. The limbic system – the lizard brain – which is in charge of emotions – fight and flight, unthinking responses – this part is what fires when we are really in trouble – when our lives are in danger – which is good because we react instinctively and fast – with no thought.

2. The other bit that is of interest is the pre-frontal cortex.  This is responsible for regulating our emotions, inhibiting actions, or helping us to think before we react.  The pre-frontal cortex is also responsible for intuition and empathy – it pulls together ‘sub-cortical regions and your body – like your heart and gastrointestinal tract – giving you that ‘gut feeling’ about things.  It is also responsible for linking past, present and future, social awareness and attuned communication – seeing the bigger picture – and meta-cognition – being aware that you are having thoughts, emotions and sensations.  Dr Daniel Friedland talks a lot about this is terms of peak performance.  Check him out at http://supersmarthealth.com/daniel-friedland/ 

Our psychological response to stressful situations, like conflict is pretty much the same as our physical response: we trigger the fear, flight and fight response, we release adrenalin, our breath becomes shallow, we get a pit in the stomach.  This hijacks our PFC and all the related circuits of awareness, so much so that we may not even be aware that we are ‘loosing it’.

Source: http://cdn.zmescience.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/09/f_brain.jpg




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