Youth Focus

Youth Focus
Monday, Jan. 23 is the Leadership Buzz Session at the Clay County 4-H Center in Vermillion starting at 5:45 p.m. and ending 7:30 p.m. for adults interested in mentoring youth.

Bring your supper and go home with information on conflict resolution, communication skills, and positive youth development. Call local Extension offices for more information on attending the Leadership Buzz Sessions.

My colleague Amanda Diede, Bon Homme Family and Consumer Sciences Extension Educator, is a speaker and she submitted the following article that I thought you might find helpful. Next week we will continue our discussion on working with the six- to eight-year-olds.

"If the only tools you have are hammers, every problem begins to look like a nail."

Psychologist Abraham Maslow had an interesting and appropriate view of conflict. If the only tool a person has is fighting, that will be the person's first and only method of coping with conflict. However, conflict is a natural part of life brought on by our different beliefs, experiences and values. If not managed carefully, conflict can harm relationships.

The first step in managing anger and family conflict is awareness. Identify your style of dealing with anger and try to understand the source of emotions. If you ignore or dismiss another's feelings as unreasonable, you are likely to provoke an even more intense emotional response. Allow all parties to express their emotions without reacting emotionally yourself. Then use empathic or active listening to try to understand both the content and the emotion of the message they tried to express.

Remember, good agreements focus on the parties' interests, rather than their positions. Defining a problem in terms of positions means that at least one party will "lose" the dispute.

For more tips contact your County Extension Office.

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