Be a Good Listener During Your Mediation
One of the most important factors in your ability to navigate efficiently through the mediation process and come to mutually agreeable resolutions is how well you listen to your spouse.
Mediation can only be successful when there is strong communication between the parties involved, and good communication requires good listening.
Here are a few tips to help you improve your listening habits during your mediation sessions.
- Be an active listener: Listen first to what your spouse is saying, then see if you can summarize in your own words what their main positions are and what is important to them. This shows your spouse you are listening to them and striving to understand their position. You don’t need to do this every single time your spouse talks, but when they begin talking about important issues to them, this can be a good tactic to get on the same page and show your spouse you are negotiating in good faith.
- Be careful of your nonverbals: What you’re not saying can be just as important as what you’re saying. Watch how you hold yourself, the types of gestures you’re making, what you’re doing with your eyes and any other nonverbal cues. Sit with good posture, avoid confrontational cues (rolling eyes, crossed arms, sighs, lack of eye contact) and focus on what your spouse is saying.
- Break down barriers: Identify and break down any barriers to communication that exist between you. Avoid using “you” statements instead of “I” statements, as they can come off as accusatory or threatening. Consider the types of language you’re using, especially when describing your spouse. Eliminate distractions and be mentally present.
- Let your mediator navigate: Your mediator will do a lot of heavy lifting for controlling the structure and flow of the session. Don’t interrupt them—let them do their job and listen to them as you listen to your spouse.
For more tips to help you get the most out of your mediation sessions, contact an experienced Long Island divorce lawyer at Solutions Divorce Mediation.