When I’m in the middle of a difficult conversation, I use the RIR Protocol™. RIR—recognize it, interrupt it, repair it—helps me stay grounded and centered.
But that’s not all it does.
In fact, there are five more ways RIR improves even the most difficult conversation.
#1: Because it requires us to “recognize,” we stay conscious of what’s happening in our bodies. That allows for a thoughtful response.
#2: If I get triggered, “interrupting” allows me space to ride my emotional wave through inquiry.
#3: RIR helps me manage my expectations of others. Usually, when we enter difficult conversations, we’re trying to change the other person. When I use the RIR Protocol, though, I’m sincerely not trying to change you. My only expectation is that we hear each other.
#4: RIR also provides guidance for why we’re having a conversation in the first place. It moves the “why” from shaming or blaming the other person to understanding them. That, in turn, puts the focus on connection rather than a power struggle.
#5: Ultimately, RIR increases our efficacy as individuals.
If we follow the steps, communication is far more effective than if we don’t. After all, if I seek to meet you where you are, one thing is certain:
It’s much more likely we’ll hear each other—and successfully meet in the middle.