Give them a reputation you’d like for yourself
Had my coaching meetings last week as a volunteer for James Ark Jersey
Obviously all coaching and mediation is strictly confidential, but it may be useful to share some of my experience and thinking. I welcome others to support or offer different perspectives in the comments.
All family relationships are a complex web, where the connection, attitude and behaviour toward anyone will have an affect on everyone. It is useful to think of families (and organisations) as complex adaptive systems.
Dale Carnegie’s book How to Win Friends and Influence People suggests “Give the other person a fine reputation to live up to.- Give a Dog a Good Name” It then goes on to quote from Shakespeare, “Assume a virtue, if you have it not.” The focus of the chapter is to project onto others the virtue you wish they had.
This is great advice, but may be very hard to execute.
If you are sad, angry, disappointed you may appear defensive or aggressive and this invites a balancing response. If you act like a child they will act like a parent. If you act like student they will act like a teacher. If you act like a defendant they may act like a prosecutor.
Carnegie’s suggestion forces us to see the good in people, and for them to find it within themselves and show it to you. This means you act like a supportive adult, it should encourage them to act like a supportive adult.
I’m not saying this is perfect, but is seems a more useful approach than being aggressive or defensive.
Generally, people want to be seen as fair and responsible. Studies suggest that people behave in accordance with social desirability in the presence of observers or mirrors. So it is really important to cultivate that image of yourself, and they may in turn do the same.
The point about observers is important. If one person notices a change that’s nice, if many people notice and speak of a change that is influential. If those people are friends, family and colleagues their perception of you can be transformative.
You may be falling part inside, it may take a while to rebuild and recover your life, but modelling the best you can be for 1 hour per day can eventually become a habit for 168 hours per week.
James’ Ark seeks to support fathers and their families going through difficult life challenges.
#fathers #families #coaching #mediation #support #dadsanddaughters #dadsandlads