Here are some tips to help you get the most out of mediation:
- Explain things clearly and positively.
For example instead of saying: “You are deliberately not returning my telephone calls to upset me!” You could say: “I would like to make an arrangement about returning telephone calls. I feel upset when I don’t receive a reply.”
- Talk about the things that you decided were important when you were preparing for mediation.
When it is your time to talk, focus on the issues you decided were important.
- Try to keep calm.
People will hear and understand you better if you stay calm. Sometimes this can be difficult. If you are getting upset, you can ask the mediator for a break.
- Be understanding if the other party gets upset.
Everyone finds disagreements difficult. Treat everyone else the way you would like to be treated.
- Listen carefully.
This is your chance to understand what the other party is upset about.
- Ask questions.
If you don’t understand something, or you are not sure if you have understood, wait until the person speaking has finished and then ask a question. If you are worried you will forget your question, write it down.
- Wait your turn to talk.
The mediator’s job is to make sure everyone gets a chance to talk. You will have a chance to say the things you want to say after the other party or the mediator has finished speaking.