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United Defense Tactical   |  Nov 07, 2023

Practical De-Escalation Tips for Professionals, Parents, and Youth



Few personal safety measures in life are more beneficial than highly effective conflict resolution skills. The ability to methodically de-escalate any crisis greatly increases your chances of a favorable outcome. By following these time-tested crisis intervention techniques, you can direct, control, and resolve almost any interpersonal conflict with strangers, coworkers, or family members. 

1. Stay Calm: Above all, it is paramount to maintain a calm composed demeanor to set a positive tone, while also emotionally disarming your adversary. Losing your composure will only serve to escalate the situation, then make it nearly impossible to effectively moderate from that point on. Remember, it’s far easier to keep your composure than to regain it.

2. Active Listening: Listen attentively to the concerns and feelings of all involved. Focusing on your viewpoint will increase tensions and force others to become even more defensive. 

3. Empathy and Understanding: Before passing judgment, make a sincere attempt to put yourself in the other person’s shoes and understand their perspective on the matter. Being genuinely empathetic to their point of view will provoke a more reasonable reaction to the conflict. 

4. Validate Their Feelings: Acknowledge the individual’s issues and emotions to let them know it's okay to feel the way they do. Sincere validation of the individual’s feelings often leads them to seek conflict resolution. 

5. Use "I" Statements: Express your feelings and concerns using "I" statements to directly avoid unproductive blame and accusations. Personally own your place in the conflict while avoiding unjust finger-pointing. Casting blame will only make the individual more emotionally defensive. Accepting responsibility for your actions is vital to crisis de-escalation, even if you are not truly at fault. Compromise is key. Being personally accountable will promote personal accountability from all involved. There’s a lot to be said for  “being the bigger man” when it comes to resolving conflicts of any nature. The blame game is a circuitous no-win scenario that only leads to greater conflict. 

6. Offer Positive Solutions: Propose reasonable alternatives or compromises to address the issue at hand. Stay focused on finding a fair resolution for all.

7. Non-Verbal Cues: Pay close attention to threatening body language. Use appropriate gestures to convey your calmness, understanding, and earnestness to quickly resolve the problem. In a conflict, body language is often more clearly interpreted than spoken words. 

8. Positive Reinforcement: Praise and encourage the other person’s de-escalation efforts and reinforce the importance of a fair, peaceful, mutual resolution. The better you make the person feel about the issue and outcome, the more apt they will be to forgive a perceived transgression. 

Remember, using clear, open communication and fostering a safe, empathetic environment are the key components of crisis de-escalation and conflict resolution.

For information on the first-of-its-kind reality-based firearms & self-defense training program offered at United Defense Tactical, contact [frontdesk@uniteddefensetactical.com]. 

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