How Do You Resolve Conflict With the “Feelings” Person?

Posted By on August 31st

Who provoked the biggest response at last night’s Republican Convention? Clint Eastwood talking to an empty chair.

The empty chair represents Eastwood’s conflict with President Barack Obama – Eastwood’s “feeling” that Obama is bad for our country. His speech failed to clarify the basis for his feelings and certainly did not articulate any solutions.

How do you resolve conflict with a “Feelings” person? Are you recognizing the people who just feel that things are bad and don’t know what to do about it?

Our world is filled with “Math” people and “Feelings” people. Typically, “Math” perspectives are presented at political conferences. The presenters speak of practical problems and logical responses. Their pure charisma may evoke feelings, but their presentations are basically straightforward and orchestrated.

Eastwood’s presentation represented the “Feelings” people. They don’t have a clear idea of what they want; they just know they don’t want Obama. They are still in shock about how they feel they’ve been wronged, and/or they are fearful about the future.

The pundits are talking about how bizarre Eastwood’s presentation came across. The people at the convention, however, loved it. They laughed and they cheered.

The pundits don’t know how to react to the anxious, unclear, and confused “Feelings” person. In your relationships, you don’t have the luxury of ignoring them. When resolving conflict, don’t dismiss the “Feelings” person that is unchanged by logic and practical discussions.

About the author

Keith Grossman helps individuals and businesses negotiate and manage conflict more comfortably. Keith is a Collaborative Attorney, a Family and Circuit Civil mediator certified by the Supreme Court of Florida, an Arbitrator qualified by the Florida Supreme Court, and an educator. Keith frequently lectures and facilitates training programs, works with individuals one-on-one, and writes articles on conflict management and negotiation topics. His e-workbooks, “What Is A Peace Chest?” and “How Do You Build A Peace Chest?“ are now available on Kindle.


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