Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Brain and Conflict – 2

Understanding something of how differing brains approach conflict, can help you recognize when you and another brain are on the same page having a friendly discussion that will likely result in compromise if not consensus, versus being in an entirely different book if not on a separate planet altogether. Conflict styles can differ based on the brain bent of the individuals involved. The brain can be described as three functional layers: the reptilian or 1st brain layer; the mammalian or 2nd brain layer; and the neocortex (cerebrum) or 3rd brain layer. [Picture your left wrist as the reptilian layer; your clenched left fist as the mammalian layer; and your right hand placed over your left fist as the neocortex.] When involved in the stress of conflict, the brain may downshift and focus its energy and attention to the 1st brain layer and access the fight-flight stress response; or become derailed with intense emotions arising in the 2nd brain layer. Conscious thought and rational discussion requires use of the neocortex or 3rd brain layer. More tomorrow.

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