Saturday, August 5, 2017

'A World Without Suicide'

This in-depth article on suicide from is worth taking the time to read. It shares, among many other things, the insight from a survivor who attempted suicide by jumping from the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco. 

Kevin Hines shares the following in the article:
Kevin rejects the notion that anyone “chooses” to take their own life. “It’s not a choice when a voice in your head, a third party to your own conscience, is literally screaming in your head, ‘You must die, jump now.’” 
He also challenges the idea that suicide is a selfish act, because to a person in extremis, compelled to believe they are a burden, living can feel like the selfish act. 
Yet he also remembers feeling how little it would have taken to deter him that morning in 2000. “I had made a pact with myself, and many survivors report this, that if anyone said to me that day, ‘Are you OK?’ or ‘Is something wrong?’ or ‘Can I help you?’—I narrowed it down to those three phrases—I would tell them everything and beg for help.” 
As he sat on the bus, where he remembers crying, yelling aloud at the voices to stop, nobody said anything. “It still baffles me that human beings can’t see someone like that, wailing in pain, and say something kind—anything,” he says.

Kevin Hines, who speaks across the world is someone Hostage Negotiation conference organizers should consider having at their next conference.  This helps negotiators with comprehending a key effective negotiator concept- empathy. 

So what's the deal with empathy? Here's what I had to say in a previous article [HERE]:
If we as negotiators are trying to influence a behavioral change in the person, it is necessary to understand their current emotions and behavior.  
Empathy is just that- seeing and understanding the perspective of another.  You need this in order to be an effective negotiator and you need to demonstrate it by taking your time to listen (yep, a pattern is developing here- each of the five skills work off of each other).  
Read more on the general importance of empathy here (really, I suggest you read it).
Read the full article at The Atlantic [HERE].