3 Count to 10


3 Count to 10

Topic Progress:

3 Count to 10

If we can tap into our pre-frontal cortex at these times – before we react – then we have the opportunity to decrease our limbic response and respond from a position of reason – not fear.

One way of doing this is noticing your reactions, naming them and breathing deeply – this tells your body that it does not have to go limbic. The old adage ‘count to 10’ has a solid scientific base!

Viktor Fankl (neuropsychiatrist and author of “Man’s Search for Meaning”) and Stephen Covey (author of 7 Habits of highly effective people), presented the idea of creating a space between stimulus (S) and response (R), so you have time to choose how you want to respond (think – T).  This requires you to completely accept that you are responsible for your own behaviour, that your locus of control is internal.

The meaning you give the situation – or the conflict will also affect how you respond.  This quote is such a powerful reminder of this truth in those times we would normally respond without thought.  There are a number of strategies you can use to find the ‘GAP’.  Some of these are described in the attached PDF “Creating the Gap”.

LSI Conflict Diagnostic Tool

In our coaching and face-to-face training programs, we often use a validated tool to assess how you habitually think about conflict and how this manifests in your response to it.  It is called ‘LSI Conflict‘.

This is a powerful way of exploring why you respond to conflict in the way you do – and how you could respond differently if you chose to. You also get insights into how and why other people respond to conflict differently to you and how to handle them.  If you are not enrolled in a face to face program, and want to use this tool, then contact us for a coaching program by emailing: info@cliniciantomanager.com.


  • Think about the example you described earlier in this module.  Download the PDF “Unpack your thinking” and unpack this conflict, asking yourself:
    • What assumptions did I make (thought)?
    • How did this make me feel, react/behave, and what result did I get (the other person’s response)?

Creating the gap
Unpack your thinking


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