Reciprocal Sovereignty: Resolving Conflicts Respectfully, by Tony Roffers, PhD., presents a communication skills model that marriage counselors, attorney mediators, relationship coaches, and corporate managers can use to structure a successful conflict resolution process. The Model, called the B-E-A-R Process (Breathe, Empathize, Acknowledge, Respond), provides a step-by-step sequence useful to anyone who wishes to resolve differences collaboratively while maintaining control of upsetting emotions. The B-E-A-R Process empowers those who use it by requiring each party to communicate respectfully, to listen carefully, and to demonstrate understanding of the other’s perspective, even in disagreement. With or without professional guidance, the process minimizes emotional volatility and balances power differentials between the parties while maximizing their willingness to implement their agreements.
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About the Author
A licensed psychologist (PSY 3704) with a private therapy practice in Oakland, California Dr. Roffers received his Ph.D. in Counseling Psychology at the University of Minnesota. He has served on the faculty at the University of California, Berkeley, San Francisco State University, and Saint Mary’s College of California where he trained hundreds of masters and doctoral level therapists for over twenty years. Originally trained in Career Counseling and Rogerian Person Centered Therapy, he later took training in Transactional Analysis, Gestalt, and Neurolinguistic Programming and has taken thousands of hours of professional development workshops to continue to improve his therapy skills. He trained extensively in Rational Emotive Behavior Therapy (REBT) at the Institute of Rational Living with Albert Ellis. Later he trained in Ericksonian Hypnotherapy and then Thought Field Therapy (TFT) with Roger Callahan. His interest in the energy therapies led him to a new method called Advanced Integrative Therapy developed by Dr. Asha Clinton and is currently teaching this method to other practitioners. Dr. Roffers has consulted with a wide variety of professional organizations such as the American Association of Obstetrics and Gynecology where he assisted in developing skill based clerkship and residency programs in medical schools throughout the country. Dr. Roffers has also developed a conflict resolution model for attorneys and mediators and has given guest lectures in Law Schools throughout Northern California. He has taught communication skills and conflict resolution skills to practicing attorney mediators throughout the West Coast including the U.S. Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco, the Alternative Dispute Resolution Sections of the Sonoma, Contra Costa, San Luis Obispo, California and Seattle, Washington Bar Associations, and the National Institute for Trial Advocacy (NITA). Dr. Roffers was one of the first professionals to be trained in Advanced Integrative Therapy and has attended all the available Seminars since then. He is currently developing protocols for the Physical Track of Advanced Integrative Therapy with Dr. Clinton.