Pre-Order Your Copy NOW at a Discount!

March 29th, 2012

Dawn Zamanis is a freelance writer and editor in the Tampa Bay area had this to say, “Ms. Eudine Herbert is a professional I highly recommend. She is talented, personable, motivated, organized and exhibits an outstanding work ethic. Her work as an author will be well-received within the publishing industry.”

To read an excerpt of the book use this link – http://gallery.mailchimp.com/9e7b42e73ed74a4dd6c93e591/files/Excerpt_Deal_With_It.pdf

I am offering a discounted price of $14.95 (includes S&H),  if you pre-order a copy of the book before it is published.  Here’s the link – https://www.paypal.com/cgi-bin/webscr?cmd=_s-xclick&hosted_button_id=ZENKX92QRHC9J

Juveniles and Group Coaching

March 1st, 2012

 

THE BEGINNING

In February 2012 I partnered with a school for at-risk teens to start a pilot program teaching/training in conflict resolution, communication skills, and anger management.   I have 3-groups, each with 4 to 6 students.  They are a multi-ethnic group between the ages of  15 and 20-years old, with their own personalities and their own stories.

How do you reach this particular group of teens to help them understand the importance of developing anger management techniques or conflict resolution skills now, rather than later?  I don’t have all the answers, every group is different.  But what I do know is that I have to be myself, and allow them, actually, guide them to show me who they really are.  Most of them are angry, lonely, frustrated, confused, or just ‘working the program.’  Don’t lose heart, there are those who are hopeful, they have a problem but don’t know what to do about it.  They’ve screwed, but they are determined to keep moving forward and not let their past determine their future.

THE LISTENING GAME

This type of group requires finesse and 1-particular skill that everyone has but we seldom use.  The skill – LISTENING.  I listen!  I listen actively.  I have found that the less I talk the deeper they will go.  I ask a question and they will give me an answer, sometimes the standard answer.  So then I wait.  They start to get anxious, looking away, and then… when the silence becomes unbearable to them, they start to talk.  Not from the mind, but from their heart.  And this is when true dialogue can begin.  This is when we can start making our way to the heart of the matter.

I have come to appreciate these young people.  They mumble when they talk. Their communication skills are lacking, and if we weren’t in the type of environment that we are, I’m pretty sure that their language would leave a lot to be desired.  However, they are respectful and polite because that is what is required of them in that place.  They continue to test me, even after 4-weeks.  But I believe I’m winning them over, one by one.

DID YOU GET IT?

One particular group session we were discussing the meaning of the Win/Win Approach, Win/Lose, and Compromise.  Young people are not given the credit that they deserve sometimes.  You might think they’re not listening, but they are.  Point in case, one student compared compromise to being …straight up trading!”  Indicating that  “…you might not like what you’re going to get or what you have to give up but that’s the name of the game called trade.”

As serious as these teens can be sometimes, there is always humor “Did you get it Ms. Eudine, or do you want me to repeat what I said?”  They smile.  [I think: smart alec.]  The group bursts into laughter and the mood shifts.  I guess they did get it.  The seed has been planted.

Stayed tuned to this page, and I will keep you posted on the my progress.

Until next time…

5-Things About Relationships You Already Know, But Do Anyway!

November 17th, 2011

Picture this for a moment… When you dated him, he was funny, entertaining, thoughtful, a great lover, and many other things. When you were dating her, she was kind, considerate, and laughed at your jokes even though you knew they weren’t that funny. One day, you knew deep within your heart that he/she was the one. You married that wonderful person and for a while things were just as you had imagined they would be. But now for some reason things have changed – they have changed – and you’re not happy. Is this scenario resonating with anyone? So, here are those 5-Things About Relationships You Already Know… But Do Anyway!

[1] DON’T talk about him to your girlfriends, family, or complete strangers. You were able to get him to take you out for dinner – it took you weeks – but he finally made the reservation. And to a very nice restaurant I might add. The waiter comes over to your table and asks you what you’d like to drink and you say (dripping with sarcasm) “Well, what would you suggest, it’s been 3-years since my husband took me out to dinner, actually it’s been 3-years since my husband has taken me away for that matter. We used to go for dinner often before we got married but not anymore. Right honey?” The waiter gives you a funny look and smiles. He only wants to know what type of drink you would like to have before you order dinner. He doesn’t care about your marital problems. Your husband has just done something nice for you. It doesn’t matter how long it took him, just enjoy and appreciate the moment. Men need encouragement just like we do. Don’t bash him and embarrass him. Build him up and empower him.

[2] DON’T put her down every chance you get in the hopes that she will change her behavior and start loving you more. Complaining, criticizing, constantly pointing out flaws, doesn’t work if you want her to change what you believe is negative behavior that is destroying your relationship. Have you ever considered that maybe she has changed because you changed? Perhaps her work environment is stressful, and all she wants to do is come home, relax, and be loved and pampered by you. She rarely socializes with her friends because it only causes an argument. So when she comes home with bags of shopping knowing full well that you are in debt up to your eyes, she might be doing it for several reasons – to get away from you, to help her relax and feel good, or perhaps she’s just so frustrated and fed-up with your behavior that she’s just going to stick-it to you and run up the credit cards even more. If he’s a man trying to get away from his nagging wife, then maybe he chooses to play hours and hours of combat video games, or hang out with the boys knowing full well that you will have something to say about it when he get’s home. But you know what? She/he doesn’t care anymore and that is why they do what they do.

[3] DON’T grill him about where he’s been the minute he walks through the door. Ok, so you’re thinking, “Well I have a right to know where he’s been, especially since he should have been home an hour ago!” And I agree with you. But listen, can you let him get through the door. Take his work clothes off, perhaps get a little something to eat before you pin him to the floor with a choke-hold? What you don’t realize is that it isn’t what you ask, but HOW you ask the question that is the key to keeping your potentially conflict situation to a minimum. The tone of your voice can let him know that you are concerned and not angry. How about “Hey baby, I was expecting you home an hour ago, is everything ok?” Give him an opportunity to respond. Now, if this is something that has been going on for a long time, then whatever it is that you’re thinking may be a valid thought. However, have you stopped to wonder if perhaps the reason he stays out late is because of you, and not because he’s having an affair or spending time with the guys. Yes, I said it. Perhaps you’re the problem. If you can be true to yourself, and it is, you can fix that.

[4] DON’T constantly remind your spouse that you should have married that other person your mom liked so much. You may think this is funny right now, but I guarantee that if you have ever said this to your spouse they don’t think it’s funny at all. You married them because they had qualities that appealed to you and that you loved. So why, on a daily basis, would you act like or say that you made a mistake marrying them? Do you think your spouse is encouraged by those words? Do you really believe that they are going to change under these circumstances? Would you?

[5] DON’T withhold sex to “teach your spouse a lesson”. If you are doing this… STOP IT RIGHT NOW! Understand me clearly; I am not saying that you should just give it up whenever your spouse demands it. What I’m saying ladies and gentlemen is that the silent treatment does not work. Your spouse is not a mind reader. How are they supposed to know what is going on in your head or how you’re feeling about a particular issue if you don’t communicate! Verbal communication. Yes, they can see from your body language that there is something definitely wrong, but if you don’t tell them, then how are they supposed to respond. However, be very careful HOW you talk to your spouse. Use a gentle voice. Talk about how you feel, not about what they did. How is your spouse supposed to make amends? How are the two of you supposed to work things out, if you don’t talk? And when you do, perhaps you still don’t feel like lovemaking, but allowing your spouse to hold you in their arms, to snuggle up to each other, assures them that you are both moving in the right directions.

Being in a relationship requires work. Some hard work, until you have both found your groove. Think about it… you have two individuals with two very different personalities, who have different beliefs, ideas, etc. These two people come together and bring all their likes, dislikes, habits (good or bad), beliefs, thoughts, and mindsets with them. Sounds daunting, does it? But the truth is, good relationships take time to mature and they evolve over time. Being in a relationship requires good communication skills, good listening skills, and good negotiation skills. You have to be willing to give (compromise) and take, forgive and let go, encourage and support, love and be loved. Sometimes you may find some of these things difficult to do. You know that you want your relationship to be different but you just don’t know the steps to take to make things better between you.

Here are a few suggestions that will help you get started in repairing and rebuilding your relationship:

  • Talk to your Minister/Pastor/Rabbi – only if he is trained in counseling or counseling psychology. Not everyone who carries the title can counsel individuals who are having relationship problems.
  • Seek Therapy or Counseling – you can go online and do a Google search for a therapist or counselor in your area. I encourage you to do your research. Check to make sure that they are licensed and that their license is current and up to date. Perhaps even go a little further and ask for references. Do your homework.
  • Find a Coach – the beauty about coaching is that it has become very popular with both men and women. It doesn’t carry the stigma that counseling or therapy sometimes carries for some individuals, especially men. Coaching provides a forum that allows each individual the freedom to get unstuck and come up with solutions together so they can move forward – together. Coaching provides a safe, nurturing and non-judgmental place to begin exploring new ideas.
  • Get a Mediator – assuming that you have tried everything you can think of, and the relationship cannot be repaired, then you should know that more and more people are turning to mediating as a cost-effective alternative to hiring an attorney. A mediator is a neutral third-party who does not chose sides, but is there to help you navigate through the process and come to a mutually agreeable solution. Again, I encourage you to do your research.

Until the next time…

Resolve It Now!

LOVE ON THE ROCKS!

August 25th, 2011

August 22, 2011 – You read the book “Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus” by John Gray PhD, but it didn’t help.  You suggested counseling but he/she wouldn’t go.  You’ve spoken with your Pastor on many occasions but didn’t receive the counsel that you felt you both needed.  And now, you’re heading for divorce.  Or worst yet, your divorce is final and now you don’t know what to do.

What you are experiencing right now is probably a combination of pain, anger, frustration, and even guilt.  You may also feel dazed, confused, and alone.  But there is hope…Divorce Coaching.

What is Divorce Coaching?
The right divorce coach will work with you (together as a couple or individually), to help you manage emotions, identify practical realities of your divorce and address issues related to self-esteem.  The coaching process is an opportunity to work with a coach whose only goal is to help you through the divorce.

What about the Divorce Coach?
Your divorce coach understands that each session is all about YOU.  Your needs. Your desires.  And your goals.  A divorce coach works with present issues to provide you with the tools to move forward into the future.  A divorce coach will also provide a safe environment that will allow you to explore your anger, fear, frustration, guilt and sadness.

There are other alternative dispute resolution (ADR) methods to a costly court-room battle – mediation and collaborative divorce are two of them.

Other alternatives to a costly court-room battle

Mediation – a neutral third party who does not represent either party, but is there solely to facilitate a mutually agreed upon solution.   The mediator can sort through differences between the two parties involved in a dispute, and find common ground; definitely a much more cost-effective solution to hiring an attorney.

Collaborative Divorce – a team of professionals trained in the collaborative divorce process.  The “team” is made up of 2-attorneys, 2-divorce coaches, a child specialist and financial specialist.  Collaborative Divorce is not for everyone or for every situation.  PLEASE do your research.

If you are having interpersonal conflicts at home, church, or in the workplace find out how Coaching or Mediation can work for you.  Sign-up for your FREE Discovery Session by visiting: www.herbertmediationcenter.com and click on ‘Get in Touch’.  Or call me directly to schedule an appointment: 813-868-7697 M-F 10am to 4pm EST.  There is light at the end of this tunnel…get a Divorce Coach.

You enjoyed this article, but it’s not for you?  Do your friend, family member, or co-worker a favor – forward this article to them.

Until next time…

Resolve It Now!

 

The Negative Side of Conflict

August 25th, 2011

 

The Negative Side of Conflict

From the UK to Israel; Syria to the USA

August 15, 2011 – This bears repeating again, Conflict is Inevitable; Combat is Not.  It doesn’t really matter where you are in this world, Belgium, South Africa, or right here U.S. you are going to encounter some type of conflict.  This entire week has been consumed by what is happening in Tottenham, London.  I was born and raised in the Sheffield, England so the turmoil my comrades are experiencing hits close to home.  More importantly it got me thinking about the way we chose to handle conflict.  And I wondered “…don’t we have enough examples of what NOT to do?  So let’s look at this situation to see if any of the steps needed to help resolve conflict were used.  [I guess now would have been a great time for you to refer back to my book - Deal With It! - if you had a copy.]

Step 1 – Check your emotions:  I’m sure that people where hurt, and yes, even angry with the shooting of this (innocent?) young man.  But they decided to hold a peaceful demonstration to show their disapproval of how the situation had been handled.

Step 2 – What is the Reason?: Initially, (I believe) it was to show support for a young man who had lost his life at the hands of the police, and also to show disapproval of how the entire situation was handled.

Step 3 – Can We Talk?: Now here is where things break down.  A small group of individuals decided ‘peaceful’ was not the way to go, they wanted to teach someone, anyone a lesson and so they started a riot.

All the other steps to resolving conflict at this point have been tossed aside.  No-one wants to listen.  Everyone wants to blame someone else and so they are not willing toown their own behavior.  And they have chosen to express themselves in a way that is hurtful and harmful.  They have chosen not to use the Power of “…ions” - discussion, suggestion, negotiation.  And they certainly have not remained calm in any sense of the world.

So we see first hand that the negative side of conflict can do – it hurts.  If you could not grasp that concept before now, take a look at various conflict situations around the world.  It is painful and in most cases deadly because at least one party is going to do and say whatever it takes to hurt (take out, end the life of) the other party.  The mindset is someone has to win and someone has to lose.  In the case of the riots in Tottenham, London, the people who are being hurt are the business owners and ‘around the corner shopkeepers.’  The riots are not sending the message that some believe they are sending.  Instead these riots are causing more people to lose their jobs and possibly lose everything that they have worked so hard to build.  Oh the negative side of conflict.

When we allow our emotions to take over, the negative side of conflict hurts and doesn’t resolve anything.  The negative side of conflict doesn’t care who gets hurt as long as someone gets hurt.  The negative side of conflict causes emotional stress which can cause physical sickness.  The negative side of conflict is always destructive.

How can I end this piece… well, just learning how to manage conflict in a healthy and transformative way is a step in the right direction, but it isn’t the first step.  Do you have anger management issues that need to be addressed?  Do you have trouble communicating effectively?  Is there some type of trauma lingering in your life that needs to be dealt with? The art of conflict resolution is more than just a few basic steps, however, these basic steps are the foundation that we all need and should certainly be taught in our schools and colleges, with quarterly workshops held in the workplace.  Resolving conflict isn’t about winning or losing.  Resolving conflict is about having an open-mind and a showing a willingness to comprise for the good of the situation.

Do you have questions?  Are you interested in a FREE Discovery Session? Please call me on 813-868-7697 10am to 4pm M-F or send me an email to set-up your appointment.

Until next time…

Resolve It Now!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Look in the mirror…what do you really see?

August 25th, 2011

 

August 8, 2011 - Who are you?  No really, WHO ARE YOU?  If you really know who you are then you would probably know how to respond to difficult or conflict situations.  But most of us don’t know who we really are inside, and so we avoid or just jump in blindly when it comes to handling difficult situations.

For example, perhaps the person that you see in the mirror you believe to be stable and creative with a healthy emotional expression.  That person has a blend of strength, sensitivity and creativity that you really admire – and others do too because they’ve told you as much.  But what you don’t see or chose not to acknowledge is the insecurity and self-doubt that lies just beneath the surface.  Yes, that is you, the real you.  That air of confidence that everyone admires is also hiding your insecurity and self-doubt.

Now that you know you have these underlying issues, isn’t it safe to say that perhaps the way you handled past conflicts was based solely on these traits and not the air of confidence that you put out there for everyone to see.  It’s the insecurity and self-doubt that drives your need to express your anger or resentment every single time, no matter what.  And you analyze everything to death which only puts you into deeper hot waters.

Start today and get to know the real you – not just your strengths, but also your weaknesses.  Don’t hide your weaknesses, bring them out and confront them.  When you acknowledge what they are, you can better understand why you re-act to certain situations the way that you do.  You will know the next step to take, how and when to take that step each and every time you are faced with a difficult or conflict situation.

Perhaps you’ve been thinking about getting a coach, but weren’t sure why you might need one.  As your conflict resolution coach, I can help you learn more about your communication and conflict management styles; develop new options and strategies for managing any existing conflicts; gain confidence in your own abilities to manage and resolve those conflicts knowing that you have someone to support you.  Take the next step and call me @ 813-868-7697 (10am to 4pm Est.) to set an appointment for a FREE strategy session.

Until next time…

Resolve It Now!

 

 “Life is a dance if you take the steps: one step, then another.” [Anonymous]

 

Conflict is Inevitable: How Prepared Are Your Kids?

August 25th, 2011

 

Parents and Teens

August 1, 2011 – I was read a story today by Janice Gibbs in a devotional book called Love Out Loud.  And I immediately thought “…What a great lead-in for my article…”    You see, today I want to you to think about how prepared your children are to handle the conflict situations they face in their young lives.  Even If you don’t have any kids of your own, perhaps you have nieces or nephews and can forward this email to their parents when you’ve finished reading it. Let me share the story with you first:

“Most children are involved in some type of sport or physical activity.  While sports and games are excellent ways for children (and adults) to keep healthy and fit and to learn valuable life lessons, they can also cause serious injuries and, on rare occasions, even death.  Our son, Spencer, enjoys playing hockey, and we all know how rough that sport can be.  My husband remembers a particularly anxious moment  in which Stephen fell victim to a nasty ‘head shot.’  Spencer was streaking down the right wing looking for his center man, heading for the net. He made the pass and wham!  He took an elbow directly to his head and went down like the walls of Jericho.  Spencer was down on the ice for a few seconds but managed to get up, obviously dazed, and stagger back to the bench.  Fortunately, he escaped serious injury.  I shudder to think what might have happened if he hadn’t been wearing his helmet and mouth guard.  Our daughter, Mikaela, has been riding horses for more than three years.  While by God’s grace, she has not suffered any serious injuries, no rider should underestimate how a 1,200-pound animal might react to unexpected loud noises or quick movements.  For these reasons, Mikaela must wear a helmet and also were hard-toed boots to protect her feet from a stomping hoof.  Parents with children involved in physical activity know how it feels when their child gets hurt.  Equipment is worn for a reason: protection.  Hockey, skateboarding, skiing, cycling, and even tobogganing require adequate protective equipment.”

“Equipment is worn for a reason: protection…” so why then do parents send their kids out everyday without providing them with adequate protection to handle conflict situations in school?  We buy them uniforms for the cheer leading team, and helmets and padding for the football team because we don’t want them to feel out of place or get hurt on the field.  Preparing your kid to handle conflict situations is just as important as providing all the gear your son (or daughter) would need to be on the football team.

Perhaps you’re thinking, “Well, I don’t even know or feel comfortable in conflict situations, so how am I supposed to prepare my kid?

Don’t panic.  The first thing you should do is sign-up to be included on my mailing list.  I will share with you tips, tools, and strategies that you can learn and teach on how to manage the conflict in your life.  You will understand why conflict happens and learn how to navigate through conflict situations with confidence.   It is so important that as parents you teach your children while they are young so that when they get to middle and high school they are well prepared.  It is never too late to learn.  They experience more conflict (bullying, arguments, fights) than they are perhaps willing to let you know.  It shouldn’t be brushed off as “boys will be boys” or “it’s just kid stuff, no harm done” the harm is being done every single day Monday through Friday, and even on the weekends through social media (facebook, myspace, email) and cell-phones.

Let me share some tips with you:

#1  – Ask your child or teenager if they are comfortable handling conflict situations when they arise?  If they say yes,
#2 – Ask them how they handle conflict situation (what strategies/plan do they use).
#3 – More than likely they don’t have a plan or their plan is “I give as good as I get!”  If that is the case,
#4 – Teach them the basic steps to managing conflict.

I would also like to suggest that you take things a step further and find out what the school is doing to protect and support your kid.  Do they have an Anti-bullying program and/or a Peer Mediation program?  At the very least, how do they handle complaints from students?  Are the teachers trained to spot the signs of students who are being bullied and, what are the protocols?  Take an active part to make sure that your kids is prepared (and protected) emotionally to handle conflict situations.

If you are interested in learning more about conflict resolution coaching, or have a situation that you would like to talk about, please contact me to set-up an appointment for a 30-minute FREE Consultation.  You can contact me by email or call me on 813-868-7697 M-F 10am to 4pm EST.

Until next time…

Eudine Herbert, M.Ed., NPCM

Your Conflict Coach & Mediator

 

 

 

 

Q&A with Dr. Linette Daniels of Empowering Youth…

July 12th, 2011

Dr. Linette Daniels has a PhD in Education – Training & Performance Improvement, is a national speaker, author and coach. She has spent the last 20-years working with youth from the cradle through college in a variety of arenas to include public school, child care, foster care, juvenile court, social services, and youth-serving programs.  Daniels is also the founder of Empowering Youth For Success and has spent her whole life caring for and nurturing children – raising 2 biological children and 12 therapeutic foster care children as a single parent.

Examiner: What do you see as the cause for the rise in bullying?

Daniels: Our kids are over exposed – over exposure is the major problem.  Over exposure has come as a result of technology, but it has now opened some doors that we did not have years ago.  Our kids don’t read anymore because of video games, music videos, etc.  They are being raised to want everything right now.  Over exposure is replacing the innocence of our children, and our family time. The only way that some young people know how to express an emotion is with violence because that is what they are exposed to every day. Parents are not home anymore, so there is no balance with how long our children are being exposed to these other entities.  Not all video games are appropriate.

Examiner: How does bullying relate to a young person’s success at home, in school and/or in life?

Daniels: It really doesn’t.  Bullying is not good for the bully, and it is not good for the person being bullied.  A child who is being bullied cannot possibility do their best in school because they are living in constant fear.  The child who is being bullied, it can totally destroy their life. Kids are now killing themselves which is absolutely insane.  This should not be happening. The kids who are being bullied feel no-one cares, and the person doing the bullying feel that they can continue to do what they do because no-one addresses the issue with them.

Examiner: What do youth need to turn this epidemic around?

Daniels: They need self-esteem.  Take the person who is doing the bullying – if we can peel away a lot of the issues (layers), we may find abuse in the family, no food at home; when we get down to the root of the matter, it’s (all about) self-esteem.  When a child has high self-esteem they don’t need to bully someone else.  If the child who is being bullied has high self-esteem, not only will they stand up for themselves but they will have an ‘aura’ that they can’t be run over.  When both sides of the coin if you will have high self-esteem in my opinion that is the ultimate medicine to the entire problem all the way around.  When I worked with the juvenile court, the children who were bullied, the bullies in particular they are in a protective mode,  and because they cannot take out their anger at home, or cannot express themselves at home – their displeasure, dislike – if they feel they have no control in one area of their life, then they will take that control and become a bully.  Hear what I’m saying, that this is not the case with one who is a bully.  Only some times.  We’ve heard that rape is not about sex, it is about control (and power).  Some people don’t understand that.  Bullying is also about control and power.  Where is that need for control and power coming from?  It is to compensate for the lack of control and power they don’t have in their own life.  [The act] of bullying is not where we should be looking at or focusing on.  We need to get through the layers and get to the root of the problem.  We spend too much time on what we ‘see’ is happening, and less time on the ‘fruit’.  As long as we continue to address the fruit then all we are doing is putting a band aid on a wound that needs surgery or major stitches.  We have to be proactive in getting to the root, the seed of the problem. In other words, for all the gardeners out there, if you have weeds in your garden, you don’t cut them off because you know the weed will continue to grow.  What the gardener has to do is dig down to the root of the weed and pull it out.  That is exactly what we have to do with those who engage in bullying, go to the root of the problem and take care of it.

Examiner: What do you think about incorporating peer mediation, Anti-bullying programs, and conflict resolution programs into our schools?

Daniels: Absolutely, I am 200% in favor.  I love peer mediation.  Having these services in the schools is where they need to be.  Whenever I speak to teachers, I tell them the children are with you more awake hours than they are with their parents.  So even though they may not want the responsibility of taking care of these children, they have it, by virtue of taking the responsibility of being a teacher.  The school system then needs to have quite a bit of things in place that they don’t have.  Kids don’t like to listen to adults and feel that we don’t understand.  When you have peer mediation with young people listening and dialoguing both sides of the situation.  That doesn’t mean that adults should not be present, as support, but we should train peers to be mediators.  It teaches a skill and set-up a system to address conflict between young people.  In addition, the school system needs to have classes like communication skills and conflict resolution which should be mandatory classes that kids in school should take.  It should start in kindergarten.  We wait until our kids are in high school and are killing each other before we want to teach them these skills.  And what we don’t realize is that cliques start in kindergarten, not middle school and high school.  We need to stop thinking that our toddlers will grow out of certain behaviors.

Examiner: What can adults do to help?  Baring in mind that some people think that bullying is not an epidemic and that a small number of cases are being hyped by the media.

Daniels: There is a lot that we can do — we need to speak up and recognize that is an epidemic.  Try telling that to parents who are burying their children because they were killed by their bully or they killed themselves because of being bullied.  As adults we have to live and be an example, because our kids don’t do as we say, they do what they see us do. Bullying in the workplace is outrages today.  Why is it ok for a parent to think they can holler and scream at their children? When we can behavior ourselves in a manner that is respectable and respectful then we are modeling how our children should behavior.  Why is it ok for our teachers to talk to children like they are nothing – it isn’t.  Why is it ok for a boss to yell, scream, and humiliate an employee – it isn’t.  I personally had to have a teacher fired because of how they were talking to my child. Now, my child was in middle school and liked to talk too much.  But he would come home everyday and tell me how one particular teacher was talking to him.  But I didn’t believe him, initially.  It took about three months, to get to the bottom of the problem, but eventually this teacher was recorded verbally abusing the students.  As adults we cannot behavior how we want to and expect our children to behavior differently.

Examiner: Tell us a little bit out Empowering Youth for Success?

Daniels: At Empowering Youth For Success we focus on three areas – business success, financial success, and leadership success.  We cannot empower young people to be leaders if they don’t have anyone to follow.  Leadership is not about power, it is about everything except power.  If we can teach young people how to be great leaders then we will also be able to address some of the bullying that we see going on.   We not only work with young people, we work with parents as well.  Leadership training empowers youth to be good leaders and ties so very well with attacking the bullying problem. Teaching them to be leaders is going to add to that self-esteem seed that we were talking about earlier.  When young people realize that they can be leaders their self-esteem grows.  A bully is a leader…misguided so we want to take that outspoken or aggressive quality and re-focus what is negative into positive leadership skills.  All schools should have a youth entrepreneur class, a leadership class, and so no because our kids need to know more than just one + one = two.  I’m not saying that, for instance, math is not important.  But in today’s society our children need much more than the basic subjects to prepare them for an ever changing world, and also prepare them for conflict that they will experience in the workplace, in college, in church.

As always, I write these articles in the hope that they will inspire, provoke thought, and create conversation.

Until next time…

 

Bullying: Teaching your child how to handle conflict (Pt.3)

January 12th, 2011

This is the last installment of the article ‘Beneath the bulling, another victim’ written by Eric Gosier, Times Columnist for the St. Petersburg Times, on September 17, 2002.

“The chain of accountability that used to keep behavior corralled into manageable range has been broken: Children are shipped to schools miles outside the neighborhoods where they interact with children they see only at school.  Parents know teachers only through the names that appear on report cards.

With so much working against them, school officials deserve praise for keeping schools grounds from becoming more battleground than they are.  Until that continuum is resurrected, until parents assume more responsibility for guiding their children, until we as a society learn that setting boundaries for children is as important to a child’s development as letting them explore new ones, schools will be stuck in its growing role of treating symptoms.

It was disheartening to think what lies ahead for my grandson’s 6-year old bully.  Pinellas County schools have a program of training for teachers and administrators devoted to bullying.  It is run by the Safe and Drug-Free Schools Program and came into being about nine months ago after analysis disclosed that two-thirds of school shootings involved young people who had been bullied.

Consequently, said Linda Jones, supervisor of the program, the emphasis is on teaching children who are being bullied how to respond appropriately.  She and Jan Urbanski, one of the prevention specialists conducting the training, confirmed some of my conclusions about bullying and said there has been little research.

They do know that the bully is searching for power and control, and it’s most prevalent in middle school, that in earlier grades it’s more likely to result from a lack of social skills than an ingrained desire for control, that it’s easier to fix at that stage.

I was surprised they did not reject out of hand my advice for my grandson.  Within the three R’s taught in their training — recognize, refuse and report — I suppose my suggestion would fit under the refuse part.  Jones and Urbanksi emphasized, though, that the victim should resist only when he determines it’s safe to do so.

With any luck, the little bully will acquire some social skills and become a well-liked, healthy citizen of his school and community.”

We often don’t want to think of the bully as a victim also, but that could be a very logical explanation?  Barb North, a well-known mediator and coach indicates that “…unresolved conflict is everywhere around us.”  She goes on to list the damage that unresolved conflict can have on our families:  domestic abuse, custody battles, communication breakdowns; to our schools: student and faculty assaults, harassment, lost class time; to neighborhoods: neighbor disputes, gang violence, police time wasted; to businesses: loss of productivity, needless litigation, backstabbing, retaliation; to innocent parties: collateral damage of every kind.

Is your child’s teacher(s) trained in conflict resolution? Is there an anti-bullying program, conflict resolution, or peer mediation program in your child’s school?  This writer would like to suggest that our parents take some time to find out exactly what their school is doing to manage bullying and conflicts between students.  This is for your child’s health and well being.  And your peace of mind.

Until next time…

Bullying: Teaching your child how to handle conflict (Pt.2)

January 11th, 2011

On September 17, 2002, Elijah Gosier, Times Columnist for the St. Petersburg Times, wrote a piece titled ‘Beneath the bullying, another victim’. Mr. Gosier reminds us that while our grandparents may have a specific instructions on how their sons and daughters should handle the school bully, that certainly is not the way to handle that type of behavior today. Perhaps you remember your father telling you. “Son, I don’t ever want you to start a fight, but if someone hits you, then I want you to make sure that you win!” His article continues…

“I learned — and taught — that lesson as a timid first-grader when a high school boy thought it would be funny to keep me from getting off the bus at my stop. What to him was a joke to amuse his friends was deadly serious to me: If I missed my stop, my normal six-tenths of a mile walk home would have more than a mile added to it. Size notwithstanding, I managed to swirl and bloody his nose.

I never had any trouble getting off the bus after that, and he endured teasing about the incident that grew in each retelling so that long before he graduated, it was simply “the time a first-grader beat him up.” My reputation after that — and that I had four older brothers — kept the rest of my school days essentially bully-free.

But there is another side to bullying, especially, as in my grandson’s case, when the bully is 6 years old. A child that age, who already displays such dysfunctional behavior, undoubtedly is dealing with other problems that make him more victim than the target of his bullying. Unfortunately, it is he, and not the parents, who ends up getting punched in the nose.

That’s what my son found when he accompanied my grandson to school the next day to make sure teachers and school administrators were aware of the problem. On sight, my grandson, who didn’t inherit my subtlety gene, announced to his bully — and whatever teachers and students were within a 100-yard range: “My dad said I can beat you up!”

The bully, confronted with responsibility for his actions, behaved like a timid 6-year-old, creating for my son a quandary: It’s easy enough to fix an instance of bullying, but how do you fix the problems that led to that behavior and will probably continue in other forms?

That is where I ran out of experience. The landscape is different now: The disconnect between school and community has never been greater. The fabric of family has never been more tattered. Standards of morality and notions of discipline have never been more muddled.”

There is certainly no excuse for bullying someone – constantly harassing an individual on an emotional or physical level – however, it is interesting to see that even in 2002 it is noted by Mr. Gosier that “…The disconnect between school and community has never been greater…family has never been more tattered…morality and notions of discipline have never been more muddled.” Is the implementation of Conflict Resolution, Peer Mediation, and Anti-bullying programs an essential part of our school system? Tomorrow, Mr. Gosier’s article concludes.

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