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I Hear You


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Table of Contents

Contents Acknowledgments xi Note to Readers xiii Introduction: From Conflict to Consensus 1 Becoming Your Own Coach 3 1 Change Yourself: Going from Stuck to Unstuck 9 Defining Stuck Situations 10 Fixing It Begins with You 13 Why Being Different Makes All the Difference 20 What About Extreme People? 23 Change What You Say 26 Change How You Say It 30 Beyond the Conversation 32 Summary 35 2 Shifting Perspective 36 Changing Your Thinking 40 Different Perspectives Can Coexist 42 Flexing Your Mind 49 Now I See It Differently 49 What's the Magic Word? 54 Shifting Perspective and Writing Your Own Magic Words 56 Summary 57 3 Overcome Your Own Defenses: Tearing Down the Walls 59 Perspective Is Practically Invisible 61 Freeing Yourself from Perspective Ignorance 68 Active Resistance 74 Summary 87 4 Tell Their Story: Looking Through Their Eyes 88 Difference of Opinion 89 The Role of Culture 93 Identifying Noncultural Differences 96 Different and Legitimate 99 Mind the Gap 102 Practice Telling Their Story 102 Guide to the Perplexed: Finding Their Story 108 Having the Conversation 111 Seeing Isn't (Necessarily) Believing 114 Summary 115 5 Looking from the Outside In: Seeing Is Believing 116 What Do I Sound Like from the Outside? 117 Simple, but Not Easy 121 Dealing with Denial 123 It's Not You, It's Me 128 Learning About Myself--Going Deep 129 Looking in the Mirror 135 Practicing How to Look from the Outside In 139 Having the Conversation 141 Walking Down the Road 144 Summary 145 6 Don't Take It Personally: Understanding It's Not About You 146 Systemic Conflict Is Role-Based 147 Competing Incentives 149 The Benefits of Competing Incentives 152 Hierarchy 156 Working for a Superhero 159 Personalities Within the System 161 Who Cares? 163 Why It's Hard 164 Identifying Your Systemic Conflict 168 Having the Conversation 172 Summary 175 7 Don't Lose Yourself: Maintaining Balance 177 The Problem 181 How Can You Tell? 186 Advice 187 Having the Conversation 191 Summary 197 8 Practice, Practice, Practice: Getting to Carnegie Hall 199 What Is Role-Playing? 200 Role-Playing to Diagnose the Problem 204 Role-Playing to Look from the Outside In 209 Role-Playing to Tell Their Story 212 Role-Playing to Practice 217 Creating Your Own Role Play 222 Step One: Find a Partner 222 Step Two: Set the Stage 224 Step Three: Have the Conversation 227 Step Four: Stop and Debrief 228 Step Five: Try Again 229 Summary 231 9 What Comes Next: Making Change Happen and Identifying Dead Ends 233 Possibility 1: The Situation Gets Better and the Relationship Improves 235 Possibility 2: Making Peace with the Status Quo 238 Possibility 3: Walking Away 244 Have You Really Tried? 244 Time to Act 247 Managing Risk 250 A Question of Values 252 Keeping the Door Open 253 Summary 254 Conclusion 256 Notes 261 Index 264

About the Author

Donny Ebenstein is an international expert in negotiation, communication, and conflict resolution. Beginning in 1996, Donny worked in the Middle East. During that time he co-founded the Jerusalem Mediation Institute, one of the first mediation centers in Israel. Donny's work in the Middle East included training for the Israel Defense Forces on how to collaborate more effectively on joint patrols with their Palestinian counterparts, and joint workshops for Israeli and Palestinian Border Crossing Staff on skills for resolving conflict. In 2000, Donny formed Ebenstein Consulting Incorporated to serve clients in negotiation, communication and conflict resolution. He has worked with professionals of all levels of seniority, from recent college graduates to partners, directors, and the top levels of management. Donny is a graduate of Harvard Law School and holds a BA in Psychology from the University of Michigan.

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