By writing an article on projectmanagement and systemsthinking I found a very good article of the Eastern Martial Arts , systemsthinking and conflict solving, which I want to share with you . (Published by Pegasus Communications)
By Judy Ringer
I teach Aikido—on the mat and in organizational training spaces.
On the mat, we take turns giving and receiving physical attacks,
falling down and getting up again about a hundred times a night,
disarming our partner without harm. We come to the mat for exercise, to study self-defense, and to practice resilience, self-control, and courage under pressure.
In organizations, participants come for similar reasons.
kinesthetic Aikido activities to gain insight into how what happens on
the mat applies to conflict, communication, and stress in everyday life.
What does Aikido teach us?
Aikido’s first teaching is in the way it frames attack.
sees the attack, the conflict, as energy to be utilized—as a gift.
The beauty of this premise is that it changes the locus of power from
an external to an internal source. We all encounter unwished-for
events, people, and problems every day. To successfully manage these
conflicts, we manage ourselves. When I experience conflict as attack, I
resist, defend, or avoid. When I frame conflict as a gift, I am willing
to engage, explore, and work with it. By changing my view, I change my
relationship to the conflict.
Reframing our challenges as energy to be received and redirected into
something useful is the first step. But how do we actually make this
shift when our emotions are triggered? This is Aikido’s second teaching.
For example, think about a conflict in which you are currently
involved. Imagine the situation in detail.
Now pay attention to your
What do you notice?
Do you become tense?
Does your breathing or
heart rate quicken?
What emotions arise?
We all know how we want to be when in conflict. People usually report
a wish to be “calm; in control; present; confident.” Yet our own
conflict habits—unconscious, ingrained behaviors such as fight, flee,
and freeze—get triggered in difficult moments, despite our best
Aikido gives us a way to retrain these habits.
What Aikido offers, through movement and repetition, is in-the-body
re-patterning, which helps us regain awareness and power over our
By practicing the blending and redirecting movements of
Aikido, we find new ways of being under pressure.
We gain access to our
calm, centered, reflective self and can call on it anytime.
On the mat, this transformation process is visual and physical. We
move off the line of attack, engage the energy, and redirect it.
mat of life, the Aikidoist employs inquiry and purpose to build
relationships and co-create intentional, trusting environments. For
example, we engage the energy of conflict whenever we listen and
acknowledge without judgment. We redirect when we help someone see
Aikido perceives the world differently from most conventional views.
Consequently, we begin to understand success differently. Instead of
experiencing conflict as an attack for which we must develop defenses,
we perceive a world in which we are part of the ebb and flow.
body, mind, and spirit, we can make more congruent and powerful choices
about how we extend our energy and receive the energy of others. Instead
of fueling the illusion that we are separate, we reinforce physically,
metaphorically, and practically that we are one connected, inseparable
system, continually inventing itself.
Recall a conflict in which you are currently involved. What conflict
habits are active? Are you defending your position or possibly avoiding
the conflict altogether? How can you engage, explore, and work with the
Judy Ringer is the author of Unlikely Teachers: Finding the Hidden Gifts in Daily Conflict.
She provides conflict and communication training throughout North
America with unique workshops based on mind-body principles from the
martial art Aikido, in which she holds a black belt. Judy brings to life
concepts such as self-management under pressure and appreciation of
other viewpoints. Her programs are interactive, experiential, and