Missed De-escalation Workshop? No Worry! Your Report is Here!
It might be nice if the only thing we had to fear was fear itself. Fear is a mighty force. One can easily turn one’s back on standing up for what they believe in or standing up for what’s right when one is afraid. It is also easy to fall into a diffusion of responsibility and not do anything, thinking someone else will take action. Some say they are glad or admire what demonstrators do, but never get beyond those words.
It is alright to be afraid. It is also all right to step away. But for those who feel that they are willing to face an unpleasant or difficult situation or fear by taking action, the world thanks you. You are making a difference. You are making this world better for others. There have been plenty of other people doing it now and throughout history.
BIG recently held a de-escalation training program and provided a lot of valuable information. The presenter, Laura, did an excellent job. One of the ideas shared was BE KIND. Use kindness. Use open body language. Be like water, don’t argue or fight, instead flow. Bend with the wind.
De-escalation doesn’t change minds, so try to shut down the debate. Try to listen. Try to validate. That doesn’t mean you agree. They want to be heard. We all do. Find human connections. Effective de-escalation humanizes everyone. You can say things like “this is also important. Can you tell me more”.
Staying calm is important. Using open body language is important. Standing slightly to the side so you are not directly ‘frontal’ can be helpful. Lowering your voice and making pauses, as well as using short and limited language can be effective. Honesty and respect are important as well.
If these things are not helping and things start escalating, it might be good to walk away from the situation or call for help. As we know everyone and every situation is different, so one shoe doesn’t fit all. We all need to be cognizant of our surroundings and be prepared for unplanned situations.
One good thing is that there haven’t been a lot of negative occurrences at BIG events. For the most part, we see a lot of friendly faces! When it is difficult, we need to keep in mind we are all family and want peace and unity.