One of our radiators wasn’t working last night, so I bled it. Which led (almost inevitably given my plumbing skillz) to the radiator haemorrhaging as I dropped the key under a veritable geyser of increasingly hot water. At 6.30am this morning, with snow still lying out in the garden and a biting wind rattling the corrugated plastic awning over the back door, the boiler refused to kick into life. Worse still, I know that my tender ministrations towards the radiator yesterday are the cause. Not only are we cold – it’s half term so the whole family’s at home – but I’m to blame. Nothing deepens the chill like the knowledge that I did it myself.
“You will work every hour that you’re not sleeping from now until the end of the project!” Silence. Eyes shifted uneasily around the table. No-one spoke up. Finally, after seeming aeons, me: “No. I won’t be working this Saturday.” “Well, then, you’ll have to make the time up.”
Iceberg dead ahead! I was alone in front of 28 potentially hostile members of my audience, having already dried up once and wanting oh-so-much for them to like me and get on-side. And what happened next?
I’ve had a low-lying feeling of discomfort over the last few weeks, just niggling away in the background, like riding a bike with the handlebars and front wheel slightly misaligned. Nothing troubling enough to require fixing here and now, but noticeable in the quieter moments of the day. Not rocket science, this one: I have been anticipating the end of a comfortable contract that kept money coming into our home for over two years. As of last Friday, the contract finished and the money stopped. This is something I’ve been looking forward to, as it frees up a lot of time to focus on my coaching/training business. And, consequently, I’ve noticed an upsurge in excitement and energy to get things done – my sense of impending freedom carrying me through the last few weeks of the contract.
The most important thing I’ve learned about conflict is that it’s much safer to more toward it than away ~ @mikhaill. I’m very skilled at dealing with conflict, I’ll admit it. I freeze perfectly. Then I shuttle back and forth stepping away from the conflict, spinning round and heading back in.