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When we are in a state of distrust, the If the interaction feels safe and positive, we
world feels threatening. Threats make us produce more oxytocin and dopamine. These
retreat, and we feel the need to protect neurotransmitters help us relax, feel open
ourselves. Neuroscientists say that threats to others, and create a state of trust. Our
can trigger an Amygdala Hijack and we Prefrontal Cortex opens up and we have
experience higher levels of cortisol and access to empathy, judgment and higher
adrenaline. The fear networks in our brains decision making and innovation capabilities.
cause us to either ‘fight, flee, freeze, or Our heart beats at a more coherent rate and
appease’ others. we connect with others more deeply.


RESISTOR Not feeling in “I want to influence you Perceived to have strong

alignment–creates to my point of view. beliefs and opinions –
resistance I’m not open to yours.” not open to influence

SKEPTIC Out of alignment– “I want to learn more Appears to be doubtful

raises doubt from you, but….” and judgmental

WAIT & SEE Waits for others “I’m uncertain, Seems always tentative
before committing am I valued and about what or whom
accepted?” to trust

EXPERIMENTOR Desires to “How can we share Seen as someone with

experiment and discover our best the courage to take
current thinking?” risks, and trust

CO-CREATOR Builds new “How can we create Willingness to transform

meaning new possibilities reality with others in a
together?” WE-centric way
© Benchmark Communications, Inc.
Co-creating Conversations ® The CreatingWE ® Institute
Conversational Intelligence ® for Coaches