Glaser (2005) reframes issues around confrontation to say, “Confronting the truth takes courage. Yet, it doesn’t have to be confrontational.” When considering collaborations, she outlines how confrontations can manifest, suggesting that the confrontations stem from “I-centric” thinking. For a few years, since I set the direction of my dissertation, I have felt that the general topic would be poorly received by my peers and by my larger professional associations. Aligned with Glaser’s sentiments, I have felt that my “expectations will not be met” (p. 233). What expectations? Perhaps, for me, it is the possibility for other ways to look at a professional dilemma within a community; it is developing alternatives to something otherwise standard; it is finding a way rather than insisting on the “right” way. Let it go.
I’m taking the deep breath. This coming weekend, I have an opportunity to share in a group format, at my regional professional association conference, some alternatives to the profession. How do I take the “I-centric” confidence issue out of my thoughts as I prepare and implement?
I will further consider Glaser’s recommendation to use the opportunity to simply put a new platform in place for dialogue. Current realities and future possibilities. There is no right or wrong. I need to use the opportunity to share, hear, be a part of a forum to address what is working and to a assess what some others are doing around the community. Through the dialogue, we can shape – or at least identify – possibilities and attitudes.
I’d like to think that I’m a “We-centric” individual working with others (p. 234); that I can anticipate (as I have) discomfort but create the space for healthy dialogue to take place. For turning potential “breakdowns into breakthroughs” through reframing the context in/through/by which our profession has succeeded and failed for decades.
Glaser, J. (2005). Creating we. Avon, MA: Platinum Press.