Ki Moments Blog

Support for life’s “key” moments.

  • Happier: Thoughts and Practices on Centering and Mindfulness (Part 3)

    Happier: Thoughts and Practices on Centering and Mindfulness (Part 3)


    I snapped at my husband: "We're going to do it." (Subtext: whether you want to or not.) He snapped back, escalating conversation into confrontation--a common occurrence in uncentered conflict.

    I don't snap that often, so I had to take a look at my reaction. To do that I had to center myself. As Tracie Shroyer put it in her recent post that began this series on Centering and Mindfulness: "Something about intentionally taking a deep breath slows everything down. It brings perspective, quietness and calmness to a crazy situation."

    • How do you get centered, become grounded, mindful and present in life's difficult moments?
    • How do you know when you're centered?
    • What makes you lose it?
    • How can you catch yourself and re-center sooner?

    Today's post is about the connection between centering and emotions. Sometimes our emotional energy is strong enough to hijack our best intentions and damage important relationships. When emotions are high, it's like being in a car that's out of control.

  • Happier: Thoughts and Practices on Centering and Mindfulness (Part 2)

    Happier: Thoughts and Practices on Centering and Mindfulness (Part 2)

    One of the questions I'm most often asked is: How do you center yourself, especially in a difficult moment? 

    I found Doug Silsbee's core body practice on centering thoughtful, practical, and easy to understand. As Doug suggests, you center yourself in difficult moments by practicing an excercise like this one over and over again until it becomes your default under pressure. Centering is not automatic. A strong center is similar to any strong muscle. It is developed through practice.

  • Happier: Thoughts and Practices on Centering and Mindfulness (Part 1)

    Happier: Thoughts and Practices on Centering and Mindfulness (Part 1)

    Today, Ki Moments begins a series of posts on practices to increase centering and mindfulness.

    Its purpose will be to answer these questions:

    • How do I actually do it?
    • How do I get centered, become grounded, more mindful and present in life's difficult moments.
    • As Dan Harris puts it in his new book, 10% Happier: How I Tamed the Voice in My Head, Reduced Stress Without Losing My Edge, and Found Self-Help That Actually Works--how do I know when I've achieved it?

    In the next weeks, invited guests and I will share thoughts and practices for achieving a more balanced, aware, and centered life, at work and at home. 

    We start with a review and quotations from Dan's' book ...

  • Finding Center in Back to School

    Finding Center in Back to School

    This month there are parents all over the country with a need to find center.  Maybe you’ve left a child at school or maybe your youngest is starting kindergarten and you’re faced with your first day of not knowing what he’s up to every single moment.  Perhaps this is the first year you have no children at home, or even are longing for a child you can send off to school one day.

  • The Manager as Mediator--Step 5: Bringing the Parties Together

    The Manager as Mediator--Step 5: Bringing the Parties Together

    How do I manage conflict between employees?
    What should I do when coworkers don't get along?

    In May, Ki Moments began a series, The Manager as Mediator, designed to help leaders address organizational and personality conflict involving coworkers, management, and leadership teams. The 5-step model offers a coaching intervention and step-by-step process for developing skills in yourself and the people you support.

    This post focuses on the last step in the process: Step #5: Bring the Parties Together.

  • The Manager as Mediator--Step 4: Build and Teach Conflict and Communication Skills (Part 2)

    The Manager as Mediator--Step 4: Build and Teach Conflict and Communication Skills (Part 2)


    In the last Ki Moments post, we left our Manager as Mediator 5-step model in the middle of Step 4: Build and Teach Conflict and Communication Skills. Step 4 has two parts:

    • Quality of Being: With what attitudes and awareness do I approach the conversation?
    • Communication Strategies: How do I communicate my point of view and willingly entertain and acknowledge another?

    We covered Part 1 in the last post. Today the focus is Part 2: Communication Strategies.

    We are preparing the parties to meet jointly. When that happens, you'd like them to be able to listen to each other, propose alternatives, and build solutions. You don't want them reacting emotionally, shutting down, or pretending things are all right when they aren't. This means they've learned and practiced some skills.

  • The Manager as Mediator--Step 4: Build and Teach Conflict and Communication Skills (Part 1)

    The Manager as Mediator--Step 4: Build and Teach Conflict and Communication Skills (Part 1)

    I’ve seen in my work the difficulty leaders and managers have dealing with personality conflicts between employees. In workshops and coaching, leaders most often tell me they want to:

    • help employees get along better.
    • skillfully address disagreements between coworkers.
    • model the conflict skills they want for their team.

    Recently, Ki Moments began a series, The Manager as Mediator, designed to help leaders address organizational and personality conflict involving coworkers, management, and leadership teams. As a coaching intervention, the 5-step model offers a step-by-step process for developing skills in yourself and the people you support.

    We’ve offered an introduction and posts on:

    Step #1: First Manage You
    Step #2: Measure and Gain Commitment
    Step #3: Meet Individually First

    This post focuses on Step #4: Build and Teach Conflict and Communication Skills.

  • The Manager as Mediator--Step 3: Meet Individually First

    The Manager as Mediator--Step 3: Meet Individually First

    You manage two individuals who are at odds with each other. They are each valuable to the organization, technically savvy and, for the most part, get along with everyone but each other.

    You've tried the pep talk:

    Come on, now, you can do this. Rise above it.

    The appeal to compassion and empathy:

    Try not to take things so personally; see things from their perspective.

    The common sense approach:

    Your work is suffering. Something has to change. You don't have to be best friends, but you do have to work together and get the job done.

    You've also tried avoiding, ignoring, and wishing things would change. You've brought the topic up at performance reviews. You've talked to colleagues, coaches, and consultants. 

    In May, Ki Moments began a series, The Manager as Mediator, designed to help managers and leaders address organizational and personality conflict involving coworkers, management, and leadership teams. Designed as a coaching intervention, the 5-step model offers a step-by-step process for developing skills in yourself and the people you support.

    So far we've offered an introduction and posts on Step #1: First Manage You and Step #2: Measure and Gain Commitment.

    Today, we focus on Step #3: Meet Individually First.

  • The Manager as Mediator--Step 2: Measure and Gain Commitment

    The Manager as Mediator--Step 2: Measure and Gain Commitment

    Have you ever tried to resolve conflict when there was no motivation? Although we often see the other person as the problem, maybe you were resistant, too. Regardless, without any desire to change, it's a lot harder to work things out.

    When you're helping others resolve conflict, is it any easier?

    In May, Ki Moments began a series of posts about The Manager as Mediator, designed to help managers and leaders address organizational and personality conflict involving coworkers, management, and leadership teams. Designed as a coaching intervention, the 5-step model offers a step-by-step process for developing skills in yourself and the people you support.

    So far we've offered an introduction that outlined the 5 steps and a second post on Step #1: First Manage You.

    Today, we focus on Step #2: Measure and Gain Commitment.

    How do you overcome employees' resistance to resolving the conflicts between them? Sometimes humans are stubborn. When the choice seems to be about being right or wrong, we almost always prefer being right. Working on the issue might mean having to look in the mirror. And if they knew how, they would have done it already, correct? Not necessarily. While resolution would make life easier, there must be a benefit to continuing the conflict or it would have ended long ago.

    As a manager and leader, your job is to help them find and understand the current benefit and replace it with others that will be more advantageous to their career, make them happier, and give them more power in the long run. The result is more than conflict resolution. This is about developing skilled leaders and role models in the organization.

  • The Manager as Mediator--Step 1: First Manage You

    The Manager as Mediator--Step 1: First Manage You

    In May, Ki Moments began a series of posts about The Manager as Mediator, designed to help managers and leaders address organizational and personality conflict involving coworkers, management, and leadership teams. Designed as a coaching intervention, the 5-step model offers a step-by-step process for developing skills in yourself and the people you support.

    We started in May with an introduction to the 5 steps.

    Today, we focus on Step #1: First Manage You

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