In this 8-week course, we’ll give you tools to help you resolve some of the biggest communication questions in life.
Most of our work, family, and social lives are spent minimizing and avoiding disputes, fights, and collisions in their many forms.
We use the phrase "I don't want to fight" when our family, partner, colleagues, or friends bring up hard conversations.
I don't want to fight about the kids.
I don't want to lose the things or people I love.
But when we ignore problems, we end up with bigger fights - both personal and cultural - later on.
Or, we live unfulfilled half-lives, never quite getting what we want, but settling for what we're given.
We need advanced communication skills for difficult conversations, when tempers are running high and reason is out the window.
More than ever, in a world split by different beliefs and opinions, we need tools for talking with people we don’t understand, or who don’t understand us. We need skills that can lead to more connection instead of more argument.
We need to learn to fight better.
The Art of Difficult Conversations course gives you invaluable frameworks and practice to navigate difficult conversations in every area of life, and come out with stronger relationships - to others, and to yourself.
"I found the material & the practice sessions highly valuable in helping me to prepare & actually have difficult conversations in my life with people that I truly care about. For me, those conversations are the most difficult, and I truly value the help I've received in this course to help me navigate those conversations in better ways."
"The course was great, loads to reflect on, excellent course materials to take away and fun and enlightening roleplay games to help practice difficult conversations and skills for handling them."
"Way beyond concepts and techniques, this is a chance to practice and learn authentic relating in the heat of difficult conversations."
"This course will give you some deep insights into navigating not just difficult conversations, but all your relationships in life with greater ease, confidence and grace."
What You Receive
8 recorded classes + practice labs
Weekly classes are 2 hours long and highly experiential, with lots of cool models. Labs are 60-90 min. All sessions are recorded and non-mandatory.
We've put together a 40-page Art of Difficult Conversation e-book, which you'll get access to on joining the course. Inside, you'll find meticulously researched conflict interventions, practices to try, stories, and lots of memes.
Resources and Community
You'll get membership in our ADC Community, where you can discuss content and view resources that we'll share throughout the course. You can also join a practice triad, with games to try every week that enhance your conflict skills!
- Practices like Tactical Curiosity and the Relating Languages that help you engage in difficult conversations with more confidence
- Self-regulation techniques to help you express yourself authentically under pressure
- Resources to map out approaching interactions, enrolling others, gaining power, and more
- Theories and frameworks that help you approach challenging personal and cultural topics in new ways
Join our next class!
We have a tiered pricing structure to fit any income level. Join us for 8 weeks of transformative experiential education and support to create a lifetime of satisfying interactions.
US, Australia, and Asia
May 7th, 2024
to June 25th, 2024
6:00–8:00 p.m. CT
Low Income - You earn less than $18/hour or the equivalent in your country, and/or have job or housing instability.
Middle Income - You earn between $19-40 per hour or equivalent, own a car, and/or do not have significant debt.
High Income - You earn more than $40/hour and/or do not have debt.
Supporter - You make any amount of money. You want to support our work and/or help subsidize low-income students and/or make us think that you're really cool.
Supporters receive a free 90-minute coaching session OR 2:1 mediation with Sara or Geof!Refund Policy
Want to attend with your whole team?
We offer Group Rates.
Curious to Try it First?
Come attend a FREE Fight Lab
These are our key concepts for understanding and addressing difficult conversations. We’ll learn to identify the Content, Contexts, and Concerns underlying every interaction, and how to work with this to clarify what is happening for each of us and why.
Why do some conversations go so well, and others end up feeling tense or strange? In this section, we’ll cover two forms of connection we might end up in - opt-in or opt-out - and how to set up a conversation so we are aligned on expectations with our conversational partner(s) even before we walk in the room.
Not every conversation, or relationship, is created equally. We’ll use the lenses of resource power, status, and authority to understand the power dynamics at play in each interaction. Then, we’ll discuss ways of using these lenses to equalize the dynamics - or to play with the disparity!
The Relating Languages
In this section, we’ll work with a revolutionary new model of identifying and leveraging different conversational “languages”. We’ll see how to use Questioning, Observing, Storytelling, and Directing to meet others more in their own social style. We’ll also help you identify what languages you tend to use most, in which ones you are weak or unpracticed, and how you can develop your fluency to become a more effective conversational negotiator.
Difficult conversations start with the self. In this section, we’ll talk about what we can do internally to help us navigate difficult conversations. We’ll cover I-Thou vs. I-It distinctions, what changes in our minds physically and philosophically when we’re triggered, and how to de-escalate from trigger. Then, we’ll talk about how to create pauses in conversation to leave space for self-assessment and grounding.
To make difficult conversations productive, we need to pay attention to the relationship between us. In this section, we’ll cover psychological safety as a way towards healthy interactions, with Authentic Relating as a toolset to implement that theory.
Navigating With Other
A toolset for the art of “getting someone’s world”. We’ll talk about the theory and use of assuming positive regard and making generous assumptions about the other person, even when it’s difficult. We’ll also present a set of four tools - validation, empathy, curiosity, and letting the other person score - that you can use at any time to turn a conversation from a dissonant fight into an opportunity to learn.
The Art of War
Putting all our tools together, this is the Art of War.
Geoffrey Hamilton Krum is a producer, facilitator, manager, photographer, chef, poet, and difficult conversationalist. His passion is in creating beautiful, no-bullshit human-centered systems that run themselves while slowly transforming the world.
Geof managed thousands of employees and volunteers before beginning training for Authentic Revolution. He is currently Producer and Dean of Authentic Revolution's Facilitation Academy, working with clients such as Dell and the National Weather Services to address difficult leadership situations.
Sara Ness is a facilitator, teacher, and community-builder who helped popularize the fields of Authentic Relating and Circling. She produced the source text for her field, ran the only woman-owned and -managed company in that arena, and built an online practice platform that ran events for more than 1200 consecutive days.
Sara has worked with tens of thousands of students in sectors from Google to Mindvalley to Burning Man, teaching authentic leadership and authentic communication. She is passionate about exposing the joy of human connection and exploring our creative potential through relationship.
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