5. Using Handout 2 (or a sheet that you have made containing examples of conflict situations), discuss appro- priate and inappropriate responses to conflict situations. Leave part of the appropriate responses blank for the learners to fill in on their own response. Make sure there are sev- eral “You” messages which are incorrect and “I” messages which are correct, so that the learners can compare.
6. Write negative feeling words that show a wide range of emotions such as “scared” or “angry” on the board. These examples can guide the learners in determining the correct words to use in their messages.
Ask learners to create a list of responses to situations they have experienced or are likely to experi- ence with their children, classmates, or co-workers.
In the next hour, have learners pair up and practice what they have learned by role-playing the different responses.
9. As an added emphasis, have learn- ers practice using “I” messages describing how things could be changed. This goes beyond express- ing feelings. For example, if a co-worker tells you that you are doing something wrong, you could reply, “Although I don’t agree, I appreciate your point of view.” Then, for the second part of the “I” statement, you could say, “I wish we could see eye-to-eye more often.”
Assessment The learner will be able to write the correct “I” message conveying both the feeling and the desired change when given a conflict situation from the workplace.
Practitioner Reflection The learners had a much easier time dealing with the parent-child situations than with the workplace situations. I believe this is because they feel more comfortable dealing with problems with which they have had more experience.