Matt's Roof Garden

Powered by 🌱Roam Garden

Project backwards to move forwards

Every conversation contains within itself many universes. To work to connect those universes is to constantly wake up into worlds that already exist.

To find common ground you must be able or at least try to intuit where a person is leading and where they are coming from, the reasons behind the words.

Very often disagreements aren't about the actual topic you are discussing. Maybe that person got burned on the deadline for their last project. Maybe they have more in their plate than than can handle. If you can find that unspoken root concern and bring it to light ( or get the other person to bring it to light ) you can work as a group to address them. The best compromises leave everyone equal parts happy and {{or: frustrated. |tense.}}

Take three steps back

How do you do this? Taking your observations ( word choice, body language ) and what you know about a person ( demeanor, disposition ) and ask yourself:

"If this then what?"

If you know what a person has said take your observations and guess what would cause them to say that

This can be overwhelming, especially in the midst of a rapid fire disagreement, but it doesn't have to be done for every single sentence. You only need to take all of what they're saying, maybe one or two of their points.

When you do this for both sides of an argument you can begin to see the {{or: points of disconnect |suppositions}} and how each party is missing the other.

🚧 Don't assume you know what they are saying

🚧 This section is very incomplete but and cribs pretty heavily from Book/Never Split the Difference 🚧

If clarification is needed be a mirror, repeat the 3 critical words or phrase of their position as a question and then wait

This isn't a battle of opinions it's a process of discovery

Pay attention to your body language and subtly mirror the body language of who you are talking to

Book/Never Split the Difference calls this 'Tactical Empathy' which feels a bit cynical to me. This type of empathy doesn't have to be artificial or some kind of rehearsed conversation tic. It can act as a natural extension of an inquisitive and questioning attitude.