One of the most important things to handle in life is confrontation. Every role a person plays in life deals with confrontation to some degree. Being a business person, parent, or friend all require times when you need to be able to properly correct an action. Some of us avoid confrontation at all costs. We may avoid it due to fear or simply because we don’t know how to confront properly. If correction is not given properly, it could lead to lifelong pain and a loss of self-esteem. But if handled the right way, people will learn and grow from it.

Techniques to Give Correction

Separate the activity from the person: A good way to help someone accept correction is to avoid judging them as a person. Instead of pointing out that they “do this and that wrong,” spend a little time separating the action from them as a person. Then you can mention that the action might not be the most beneficial and you can avoid seeming like you’re judging them.

Sandwich Technique: An effective way to handle giving correction is to sandwich it between two genuine compliments. I have to say, as a child my parents utilized this technique quite a lot. It really helped me take the correction when I heard about the good I was doing instead of just the correction.

Use Third Parties: To make it seem like the person being corrected is not the only person to have that issue, use a third-party story. It not only makes correction easier to take, but it also gives them an example of why the correction is needed.

Switch Places with the Individual: Another technique that my parents used with me as I grew up was to ask me to decide what my punishment would be if I continued misbehaving. This is a good way to allow the person you’re correcting to think about their action from your perspective and see the reason behind the confrontation.

Your Turn!

How do you feel about being corrected? Many of us hate it more than having to correct someone else. But the truth is, we can’t do everything right by ourselves. We need the help of other people and part of that help is being corrected when we are doing something wrong. Granted, not all correction is valid so you need to be honest with yourself and use wisdom about it. But if the correction makes sense, you want to make sure that you change and accept it as a learning experience.

What actions will you take to improve how you give and receive correction this week?