Let’s connect two of my favorite things – Marvel comics and mediation. Have you noticed that some people turn into the Incredible Hulk when they are in conflict? Think about the last time that something upset you or that you had a conflict with another person. Was that the best version of you? Were you present as the mild-mannered PhD and MD scientist, Bruce Banner, or his alter ego, the big green monster, the Incredible Hulk?
I would like to explore this concept even more and help you take stock of what’s going on physiologically so that you can try to control your inner Hulk!
Before some freak accident created The Big Green Dude, Bruce Banner was just hanging out being a normal cool scientist with a PhD and MD. We all know this guy and maybe some of us are this person – mild-mannered and relaxed until something ticks us off and that conflict will catapult us (I mean, Bruce) to literally a big green monster. Think about that for a second…. As a mediator and lawyer who is often called to help people when they are in a conflict state, I often wonder what that person would have been like if I met them when they were present as Bruce Banner.
Everyone has a different physiological response to conflict. Here are some things that I have noticed:
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- Fist clenching
- Tightening of the jaw
- Pursing of lips
- Rolling eyes
- Body tenses us
- No longer using inviting body language
- Crossing arms
- Tone of voice changes
- Type of language used (cursing, off-color language)