Archive for January, 2009

Conflicts….

January 30, 2009

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One sunny afternoon I decide to stay in and watch college football instead of doing my chores.  I turn on the television and find the game that I am looking for.  Just then my mom walks out of her bedroom and finds me in front of the television.  She begins to yell and scream and another conflict breaks out.  I have lived with her for the better part of 25 years and during that time I have taken punishment in every shape and form, from a belt, to a spoon, and a stick, and verbally to my all time favorite the hanger.  Our conflicts never ended pretty, either I was crying or she was crying or both of us were crying but over the years I learned what to do and what not to do and she also learned how far she could push.

 

                                                 

When I first entered college I took a class in leadership and we covered conflict styles using animals so I will sometimes refer to the animals when I speak about my conflict style.  fox_-_cartoon_2cartoon_owl1teddy20bearcartoon_shark_0113384_cute_baby_sea_turtle_swimmingDuring a conflict I will not say anything unless the person is looking for an answer to their question.  Through the years I have learned this style because I deal with very aggressive people.  From my mom to my supervisor to my friends, most of them are aggressive so I tend to hold my tongue and just take the verbal abuse.  To engage in a yelling match is not my style, it never gets anything accomplished and you may say something that you regret and that’s why I don’t like them.  To argue with the person is also something that I don’t do because that means that I will have to sit their longer or talk to them over the phone longer so I just agree with everything they say even if it is wrong.  I have learned how to hold my emotions and find other avenues on releasing them after a conflict or after being yelled at.  The way I see it is that there is a pecking order on the totem pole and I am always the low man so I just take what is thrown at me and hopefully one day I will be able to climb the ladder so I don’t have to take everyone’s abuse during a conflict.

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            I tend to have a lot of conflicts with my mother however with my style the conflicts tend to dissipate shortly after it starts.  There is an unwritten rule about me visiting in our house that I can stay for no more than 3 nights.  This is because by the 3rd day my mother wants to kill me and all she does is complain and yell.  Granted there are times that I deserved it however there are times that I didn’t.  We “argue” about chores, finances, family and everything in between, however I notice that we argue about the same things every time.

            When I am in a conflict with my mother there is only one goal.  That goal is to let her say what she has to so I can leave.  It seems like I do not care however as I mentioned before it is because most of the conflicts are the same.  If there is something new that comes up then I will chime in when I need to unless I just sit there are look at something behind her as I was taught in Speech 200 to do.  By having this one goal I feel that it can be both my positive and negative feature.  It’s positive because our conflict will not escalate any more however it is negative because it will always be a one way conflict.  By me not talking she doesn’t know where I’m coming from so that’s why it’s so negative.

                       As I mentioned before I tend to shy away from conflicts.  I’d rather make some one happy then argue with them.  However I am learning how to be assertice during a conflict.

Alice Paul, a Hero

January 29, 2009

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             Leadership comes in all shapes, sizes, forms and genders.  Alice Paul, Susan B. Anthony, Harriet Black and Helen Keller are all American icons and unfortunately I know nothing about anyone of these women.  I heard of Helen Keller in grade school because she was deaf and blind and she did a lot of great things.  I know that the $1.00 coin has a picture of Susan B. Anthony but that’s about it.  I am not a history nut and frankly history bores me to the point where I fall asleep in class, but I do find the law intriguing and mystical at times.  I feel this way partly because of television and what it has done but I get excited when I am watching a show involving the law and how attorneys find loopholes just to get their client off or to send someone to jail forever.

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Iron Jawed Angels was an eye opener to say the least.  I had no idea about the women’s suffrage movement and I really hadn’t heard anything about it until this movie.  In my book Alice Paul is a great leader and she is a hero.  According to this movie she was so influential that she gained the trust of many women and men just by being persistent and standing by what she believed in.  She got people to jump from the NAWSA (National American Women’s Suffrage Association) to form what is known ad the NWP (National Women’s Party), and she did all of this during a time of war.  She also was so influential that she got Woodrow Wilson and the rest of Congress to listen to her.  If you look up the word hero you should find a picture of Alice Paul next to it because she gave women a voice in this country.

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            Alice Paul started a movement in the early 1900’s and what I now realize is that she had to endure a lot of adversity and criticism just to gain some equality.  She lost one of her friends, got thrown in jail, go thrown into solitary confinement, she went on a hunger strike and she was forced fed until she started to throw up and bleed.  I feel that her movement would not have continued or would have stalled if she didn’t get thrown in jail.  In the end all of her perseverance and hard work paid off when Congress voted to allow women the right to vote.

                                    It takes a hero to be able to gather so many people and make them buy into their ideas.  This is what Alice Paul accomplished and for that she is a hero.