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Communication and Conflict website!

Promoting Mindful Communication,

Growth through Conflict

"Conflict is the beginning of consciousness"

- Mary Esther Harding

Thanks for visiting the Communication and Conflict website!

Hi, I'm Alan Sharland

My work, for the past 28 years, as a Mediator, Conflict Coach and Trainer in Conflict Management skills, has been to assist people in dispute.

The observations, insights and Principles given on this website have been taught to me by the many brave, but determined people who wanted to create ways of resolving their conflicts effectively.

"In my opinion there are few people in this country who are as skilled both as a practitioner and leading advocate of Conflict Management and Conflict Resolution as Alan Sharland. He has an excellent reputation in the field." - Marina Cantacuzino - Founder/Director of The Forgiveness Project.

Are you involved in a destructive conflict?

Have you had:

  • a tiff with your partner?
  • a ruck with your boss?
  • a sulk from your teenager?
  • a riot in your meeting?
  • gang warfare on your estate?
  • some other kind of 'falling out' with someone?

Has the problem become entrenched over a number of weeks, months or even years?

Does it tire you out?

Do you want some support?

This website provides answers to these questions and many others relating to Communication and Conflict....

  • Do you repeatedly find yourself in the same kind of conflict situation with the same person or even with many different people?
  • Do you work in one of the Helping Professions and wonder why you feel so overwhelmed by the demands of your clients?
  • Or are you struggling with a destructive conflict situation at work and want to know how effective communication in the workplace can help?
  • Do you want to find out how effective interpersonal communication can support conflict resolution in relationships?
  • Do you want resources and approaches you can use to teach yourself and others how to resolve conflict effectively?
  • Are you looking for conflict resolution exercises or training in effective interpersonal communication and conflict management skills that support conflict resolution?


Here's a quick overview of the site... 

Ok, the main features that you will find on the site are: 

  • 9 Principles of Effective Interpersonal Communication which also support effective Conflict Resolution (you can even purchase a Guide that helps you to practice these).
  • 6 Underlying Philosophies of Mediation - if you are a mediator or just interested in what mediation is 'about', these will explain the thinking behind my mediation practice. 
  • 3 different ways in which people tend to respond to conflict. Two of them never lead to a resolution of conflict. One of them helps us to resolve it and grow and learn from conflict. 
  • 3 Communication Skills that help us to be effective communicators, and help us to help others resolve their conflicts when requested. You can also buy an e-booklet that puts all the information about these skills together for easy reference. 

This website also helps you to......

  • Become more aware of your day to day use of language, such as labelling and 'I' statements, and how it affects your relationships with others.
  • Develop skills that improve the effectiveness of your communication and your capacity to resolve conflict.

Why 'Communication and Conflict'? further information on the thinking behind this site.

  • Learn to approach relationships and interactions with others as a continuous opportunity for personal growth.
  • Understand how many common stereotypes about non-verbal behaviour, often called 'interpreting body language' hinder effective communication.
  • Lose your 'fear of conflict' through developing an understanding of the Principles of Effective Interpersonal Communication.
  • Learn to empower yourself in any conflict situation through losing your dependence on others to 'change'.
  • These are just some of the insights and challenges that you will find in the pages of this website.

    Are you a Conflict Resolution Practitioner looking for resources and further understanding of your field of work?

    Would you like to know....

  • What are the Underlying Philosophies of Mediation that underpin the insights and ideas discussed in this website?
  • What is meant by a 'No-blame approach' or 'No-blame culture'?
  • What is the Rescuer Syndrome and why is it a destructive response to conflict?
  • Why is empowerment such an important aspect of effective conflict resolution? What is empowerment in this context?
  • What are the effective communication skills used in supporting someone in the resolution of their destructive conflict?

  • Conflict Coaching via Zoom

    You can also arrange a Conflict Coaching via Zoom if you would like One-to-One support with:
    • How to handle a conflict situation constructively
    • Communication difficulties you are experiencing
    • Mentoring for your conflict resolution practice if you are a Mediator

    Would you like to sit back and watch some videos relating to communication and conflict and human relationships? 

    If so visit our Video Lounge for videos that promote mindful communication, growth through conflict

    The practices of effective interpersonal communication and effective conflict resolution are more about self-awareness than about techniques or 'strategies' for changing or 'dealing with' others.

    And that's great news. Because it's impossible to change others, but the possibilities for changing ourselves are infinite. And we each have the power to do so.

    Seeking to control or change others in a conflict is conflict suppression and conflict avoidance. It doesn't work.

    Seeking to control or change ourselves in a conflict situation leads to conflict resolution. It does work.

    Effective support for conflict resolution empowers people to find ways of controlling or changing themselves.

    Ok, as you can see there are a lot of resources on the site. If you haven't already done so via some of the earlier links then take the first step and......

    Click here to start your journey towards more Effective Communication and Conflict Resolution.


    Have your say about what you just read! Leave me a comment in the box below.
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    Visit our

    Podcast Page CAOS

    on iTunes

    CAOTICA Podcast about communication, conflict resolution, mediation.

    Join our new 

    ONLINE Introduction to Conflict Coaching Skills 

    (6 x 2 hour sessions on Zoom)

    Learn about the CAOS Model of Conflict Coaching, the first to be developed in the UK in 2008 and one that does not have to be connected to ongoing mediation but can be simply a 'stand alone' support service for individuals. 

    Open to non-UK attendees - visit the link above for more details and to register your interest.

    Train to be a Mediator in London UK with CAOS Conflict Management:

    Are you experiencing difficulties communicating with someone? Perhaps at work with your boss, or your colleagues, or at home with your partner, children or other family members? Is there an unresolved conflict that you are struggling with? The following book can help you with that.......

    A Guide to Effective Communication for Conflict Resolution

    A Guide to Effective Communication for Conflict Resolution introduces the 9 Principles that are also described on this site to help the reader develop a 'mindfulness' in relation to their communication in a way that supports the resolution of conflict. In this book

    Alan shares his observations and learnings from working as a Mediator and Conflict Coach with regard to the ways that people become stuck in unresolved conflict but also how they go on to create more effective ways forward in their difficult situations. 

    "I think you put together so well all the essential components of
    conflict transformation in a way which people can relate to and
    understand. A brilliant book and I will recommend it to everyone." Jo Berry  www.buildingbridgesforpeace.org


    I work at a homeless shelter/rehab and I teach a class on community living. This is a new field of employment for me. I can use this site for ideas for the class I teach.

    This is going to be very interesting and educational for myself as well as others.

    This site is a big help. Thank you!

    TM, Kentucky, USA

    Working with 'Bullying'? - This may interest you….

    Hello Alan Sharland

    Thank you SO MUCH for this article! It brings forward some very key points about the phenomenon of "bullying" which I have been pondering for some while. Among others, asking to what extent can/should the person on the receiving end of the bullying/perceived to be bullying take responsibility/initiate steps to shift the paradigm? How can this happen without implying that the recipient is somehow responsible for the bullying behavior?

    Laurie McCann, Campus Ombuds, Univ Calif Santa Cruz

    Hi Alan,

    You have put together an awesome web site with lots of fantastic materials.

    John Ford - Managing Editor Mediate.com

    Hi Alan, ..... your site is great. I've been reading all the material and have to say its already made a difference in how I sort out/manage some of life's little problems. JH - West London, UK


    This article is the BEST article on questioning I have ever read and I'd like, with your permission, to pass it along to our mediators.Your examples of both genuinely open and 'not-so-open' with explanations are very insightful.

    ML - Canadian Govt. Agency


    Hi Alan

    I have just spent hours on your site as I truly love the eclectic mix of reference material that you kindly share. From Gibran to Byron Katie and the fab youtube clips! I am making my free hugs poster as of now :-)

    Anni with joyful smile :-)
    Preston, UK