Training & Events

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Understanding the Nature of Conflict

What is the nature of conflict? What are our instincts doing to us to keep us from resolving our differences? How can we communicate more constructively during conflict? These questions are answered in our interactive workshop where participants explore topics such as why communication breaks down, how we can build better relationships, and how to express emotions appropriately.

Location: Sherwood Senior Center, 21907 Southwest Sherwood Boulevard, Sherwood Or 97140
Dates: October 16, 2017
Time: 10 am to 1 pm
Cost: Free, but registration is required
Register online or call (503) 526-2523 

Empathy - Change Your Brain with Neurobiology

Training is for current volunteers / practitioners ONLY.
If you would like the workshop to be offered to the public, email us.

October 14, 12-4 pm
Location: Beaverton Council Chambers, 12725 SW Millikan Way, Beaverton OR
No fee for course but registration is required.

Course instructors: Radhika Niles and Liz Levy

This workshop is a continuing education opportunity for current RJ volunteers seeking to deepen their skills and knowledge. In this class, participants will explore the neuroscience behind bias, and examine how empathy can change our brains.

Course agenda:

  • Initial circle process
  • Presentation on Bias, Social Neuroscience, and Empathy
  • Discussion
  • Exercise on self compassion- Difficult thoughts and emotions ( Mindfulness) Create understanding of how negative emotions affect the self.
  • Exercise on perspective taking- Humanizing a harm-doer Reflect on the “hidden” causes of harm, transform Increase the number of neural pathways for a given harm-doer or incident. Demonstrate concrete ways to shift bias while not emotionally activated.
  • Closing process

Summer Workshop Series

Workshops are free but registration is required. 
We are going to offer the workshops in 2018. Come back later to learn the details. Or subscribe to our mailing list and get info about our upcoming workshops and trainings.

Conscious Communication Workshops

These workshops focus on how to build healthy relationships, communicate effectively and resolve conflicts in skillful ways. Participants learn to recognize their own triggers to conflict, understand why many of the ways we respond do not work long term, and how to negotiate better resolutions to difficult issues. This three-part course will be experiential with opportunities for each student to learn about their individual ways of responding to difficult conversations. Through case studies and reflections, everyone will have the opportunity to become skilled at resolving conflicts and create genuine connections. The class will also focus on learning to communicate effectively and respond to conflict while working with diverse cultures. Classes will build on each other but can be taken individually. 

Workshop I
Conscious Communication: Communication Habits that Establish Healthy Boundaries

In this workshop, students will use case studies to understand the nature of conflict and the pitfalls that keep us stuck in ineffective patterns of behavior. Neuroscience helps us understand that our brains play a strong role in how quickly we react to real or perceived threats and the ways we miss opportunities for real connections. Participants will also learn ways to set healthy boundaries, while negotiating in collaborative ways.

Workshop 2
Conscious Communication: Understanding the Language of Emotions

This workshop will focus on how to recognize negative emotions, discern facts from judgments, and remain neutral in order to understand communication dynamics as they are happening. Participants will practice useful ways to listen beyond right and wrong to get to the true elements of what went wrong. These skills are necessary to eliminate misunderstandings and create healthier communication, while preserving relationships.

Workshop 3
Conscious Communication: Skilled Facilitation – Integrating Diverse Viewpoints

The third workshop will focus on the art of facilitating conversations that integrate others points of view when looking for best solutions. We will cover ways of working with people of diverse cultures and those of different generations. 

Additional Conflict Resolution Courses

What is the nature of conflict? What are our instincts doing to us to keep us from resolving our differences?  How can we communicate more constructively during conflict? These questions are answered in our interactive workshops where participants explore topics such as why communication breaks down, how we can build better relationships, and how to express emotions appropriately.  

Understanding the Nature of Conflict

Conflicts occur when people disagree over their values, motivations, perceptions, ideas or desires. This interactive workshop looks at how conflicts can cause breakdowns in communication and hurt relationships. We will explore the nature of conflict and the instinctual and neurobiological conditions that keep conflicts from getting resolved.

Dealing with Angry Customers

Many of us work with customers or the general public over the phone and/or face-to-face. At times when conflict emerges, we may feel attacked or insulted by the other person’s words or behavior. This workshop will help participants understand and manage our instinctual defensiveness and explore how to have more productive conversations in the heat of the moment. Instead of reacting, participants will practice how to slow down responses, replace defensive statements with questions, use appropriate tone, and reframe the conversation to deescalate the conflict and have more effective outcomes.

Negotiating with Emotional Intelligence

This workshop will focus on the role of emotional intelligence in successfully negotiating desired outcomes. Emotional intelligence is the ability to recognize, understand, express, and maintain good social relationships to guide our thinking towards solving problems under pressure. Participants will practice navigating complicated situations by eliciting constructive engagement from people who might not otherwise cooperate.

Mediation Skills

For Managers, Supervisors, and Leads

What can we do about conflict in the workplace? How can we communicate more constructively in the heat of the moment? What techniques can be used to help a difficult conversation go more smoothly? How can we more effectively support employees experiencing conflict with others? These questions are discussed in our highly interactive two-day Mediation Skills for Managers, Supervisors and Leads. This training is focused on government and non-profit employment sectors. 

Course Topics:

  • Common sources of workplace conflict
  • Instinctual response to conflict
  • Conflict response styles
  • Personal qualities of a mediator
  • Positions and interests
  • Listening skills
  • Open–ended questions
  • Stages of workplace mediation
  • Special issues in mediation

Workshop Reviews

This was THE BEST training I have been to in a long while.  The opportunities to role play with the “experts” was fantastic.

It was such a good training. Inspirational.

Everything our instructor taught was very applicable in both our work life and personal life. I found it valuable to learn how to "hold my ground" and to ask questions that get the point across w/o sounding offensive.


The Dispute Resolution Center has a commitment to teach community members about effective collaboration, group decision-making, and the nature, management and resolution of conflict, which is part of our everyday lives. We give talks and offer custom trainings to professional organizations, homeowners associations, clubs, neighborhood associations, manufactured dwelling parks, business groups, schools, etc. Please give us a call at 503-526-2523 if we can be of service.