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Are we doing okay?

By Andrew Boyd, Mediator

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Today is the start of Family Mediation Week, which ‘aims to raise awareness of mediation and how it can help separating families manage their issues collaboratively and productively.’ Family Mediation is just one of the situations in which mediation can help people to talk through the conflict they are experiencing and create a way forward.

In these challenging times when families don’t have the ‘space’ that they normally enjoy, emotions can be heightened and this can impact how families interact with each other and those around them. Also, our relationships with friends and colleagues are at times under strain and the need to talk things though is even more important than ever. Mediation can help with all of this.

So how are we doing? Are we doing okay?

Working as a mediator in a wide range of situations, it can sometimes seem to me that there is a great deal of conflict around! As our interactions with people are limited just now, we can become overly focused on what we spend most of our time doing, in my case, working with people in conflict. I have a friend who just now is working frontline in hospital with patients with COVID. With long shifts, limited time off and the huge stresses of work, my friend recently commented that it sometimes feels that everyone in the world is extremely ill! Clearly everyone in the world is not extremely ill and neither is the whole world in conflict. While I’m not trying to compare the huge stresses of working with COVID patients with working as a mediator, the same approach of allowing ourselves to become overly focused on the negative things that are happening in our lives just now, isn’t helpful. When our glass is half empty, rather than half full, it is more difficult find the energy to power forwards and deal with the challenges that the day brings. This is easy to say but can sometimes be not so easy to do!

So back to the title of this blog. Are we doing okay? Yes, we are!! By focusing on the positive things that are happening just now, it’s a little easier to deal with the negative things. I would encourage you to grab the good stuff, give yourself a pat on the back and to tell yourself…‘I’m doing okay!’.

Andrew Boyd, Mediator

Andrew is a registered mediator and following completion of an LLB in Law, Andrew completed his MSc in Mediation and Conflict Resolution at Strathclyde University. In his role with Cyrenians' Scottish Centre for Conflict Resolution (SCCR), Andrew inputs his conflict resolution experience to the SCCR resources and events, and also delivers training throughout Scotland to young people, parents/carers and professionals.

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