Making Matters Worse

Monday, 05 October 2015

When you recognise you are in a stressful situation what do you do?

Invariably you just make matters worse.

Take the negative energy out of a challenging situation.

James Thomas had a major and growing problem with a business colleague. Despite every intention he worked hard to keep control.

Each time they met his resolve vaporised in seconds and their meetings ended in worsening conflict.

Performance was suffering badly in their department. The HR director told them both to sort it out or get out.

In the following coaching session it was decided a different simple approach was necessary

Although James’ idea was simple it required careful planning  and practice to maintain control of a potentially emotionally charged situation.

What James did at the next meeting with his colleague was to first ask his consent to listen to his proposal before responding.

With a somewhat bemused approval, James  headed directly into the problem by stating the blinding obvious. His colleague disliked him and he disliked his colleague.

Next he asked his colleague to state every reason why he disliked him and with absolute honesty. This conversation was between themselves and each had to respect the others opinion without any defensive comment witnesses or retribution of any kind or nature ever in the future.

James wrote down each reason and asked his colleague to do the same.

When both men completed the exercise they immediately proceeded with their official business in hand.

That meeting and all following meetings passed amicably.

The above is just one example of managing stress, stresses and stressors by dealing with the obvious and not getting into destructive ploys of counter defensive arguments of what is right, wrong or the complex detail.

There are more than six billion people on the surface of the planet. Each has their unique idea of reality, what is right, what is wrong and how to behave.

The key is in being non-judgemental also accepting we may have been opinionated and judgemental to our own unrealised detriment.

The above exercise may not work 100% immediately. Its effectiveness is in each participants accepting their personal responsibility for projecting a behaviour that contributed to conflict.

The second part of the agreement was each one would take their two lists of dislikes as opinions and not definitive or absolute.

Each was to seek guidance via a qualified and experienced coach to process those lists in order for each to learn about themselves, their colleague also the complex art of communicating effectively.

Those are the basic details, the entire strategy and the following procedures are too lengthy to discuss in this setting.

A layman’s guide to how your brain can work for you IN A FAR BETTER WAY is all in Robert P. Denton’s new book ‘High Performance after Burnout’ ISBN 9781512294705 is available at or order from your local book store.

2.AAB. High Performance after Burnout Book cover

Also available by contacting direct at:    

For more information free of any commitment, contact:


This book  explains how your thinking processes work.

Why stresses and stressors dominate your life and mostly you are not aware of the fact or extent.

Most importantly it also explains how you can change your thinking processes to take back control of happiness and abundance and put stress and stressors where they belong.

For definitions and more information please see:  Specific pages listed above just under the image of a mountain river tumbling through rocks.