Emotions are an integral part of human relationships. Positive relationships are based on shared feelings of joy, love, compassion and empathy, but all relationships are complex and will experience periods of conflict. When the conflict becomes too great for us to resolve on our own, it may be worth considering mediation.

It is upsetting to deal with conflict. As humans, we are wired to be a part of a tribe and when this sense of togetherness is threatened, we feel vulnerable. All conflict stirs up feelings of hurt, shame, fear and guilt, and this can leave us with the sense that our only recourse is to leave, attack or defend. There is often a more measured way through.

Sometimes in our personal and business lives, relationships deteriorate. They may not have turned out quite as we thought they would, or circumstances and context might have changed. However, whatever the conflict, if both parties are committed to seeing a way through to a resolution, whether that means staying together or parting, continuing to work together or finding another solution, mediation can help.

What is Mediation?
Mediation is a process for resolving disputes. The role of a Mediator is to “go between” the parties in dispute and guide them to a sustainable and agreed solution. All emotional, practical and social concerns are addressed both collectively and individually so that everyone can air their grievances, be heard and ultimately reach a resolution. The goal is that all parties leave mediation with a more informed and realistic perspective on the situation.

How can Mediation help?
When we feel defensive or angry it is very difficult to hear the other side of the story. A conversation to clear the air, while uncomfortable, is necessary to move forward – and this takes skill. We know that positive emotions enhance problem-solving, so having someone empathetic to both parties helps the solution-focused thinking that is required to come to an agreement.

Some clients don’t want the publicity of a court case, others don’t want the cost of one. For some clients, it is simply a matter of being validated and understanding how to bring a relationship back from the brink. Recent examples of successful mediation include a couple who needed to mediate their shared parenting after a divorce and, in a commercial context, siblings who inherited a family business but clashed about how it should be run. In both cases, a calm and experienced Mediator was able to help all parties talk through their needs and find a workable outcome.

Ultimately, our goal as Mediators is to provide you with a safe, supportive space to bring your issues to resolution. You can step into our empathy and skill, and step back from the pain of the conflict you find yourself in. We will hear what you say, listen to all of your issues, unburden your emotions around the conflict and find a route forward together.