Please Give Some Tips For Dealing With Confrontation

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Dear Laura,
Can you give me some tips for dealing with confrontation? I am a nervous wreck.

Dear LM,

For starters, is the person you are confronting rational? Because that makes a big difference in whether or not you should ever engage in confrontation. Trying to sell sanity to the insane is not a good use of time. Plus you may wind up getting some of their chocolate on your peanut butter. So the most important tip is: Assess what or who you are dealing with! Always be safe. Never debate gun control with someone who is holding a loaded gun. Got it?

Then, if all signs indicate a rational encounter, it helps to write out your points ahead of time. Being prepared helps to remove the fears that make us tongue tied. Stay calm. Stick to the issues and facts, while avoiding making judgments about character. Be clear: when you did X, it makes me feel Y, and caused Z to happen. Remember a few key phrases so you can use them to keep the confrontation on the issue. Take some Rescue Remedy to help you calm down and think through the smoke of it all. There aren’t a lot of people who really like confrontation, so by approaching things calmly, a win-win can arise. Congratulations on finding your voice!